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‘Brexit is a mess!’ says Farmers’ Union of Wales President

28 Nov 2022 3 minute read
FUW President Glyn Roberts

Siân Williams

FUW President Glyn Roberts has described Brexit as a “mess” and says the exit from the EU is one of the factors responsible for the hardships now being faced by farmers across Wales.

Speaking from the Royal Welsh Winter Fair, Mr Roberts said: “Brexit is mess and it’s one of the factors why the economy is not working. As a result of Brexit farmers have lost 20% of our turnover. Not only are we missing out on trade with Europe, we are also losing out on opportunities for trading with the rest of the word by not being part of the European Union.”

Roberts who farms near Bala, added: “Looking at the bigger picture, the cheap eggs coming in from
other countries just adds to our other problems. One of our main concerns at the moment is the
daily rising cost of fuel and inflation in general.”

Italy

Supermarkets like Sainsbury’s claim they are importing eggs from as far afield as Italy due to
shortages closer to home. But bearing in mind that the number of egg producers in Wales has
soared in recent years, it’s worth noting that some within the industry are accusing supermarkets
of using this to drive down the price of eggs.

In the run up to Christmas, farmers are usually looking forward to an increase in the demand for red meat. But this year, some are worried that imported lamb from New Zealand will eventually drive down the price of their, much higher quality, Welsh lamb.

According to Roberts: “We produce the best quality meat and now more inferior and cheaper meat
is being imported. If the UK Government can’t ensure the same standards – and that goes for animal
welfare as well – when importing from other countries, then they should put a stop to the trade
deals.”

Trade deals

Mr Roberts says that the trade agreements, such as those between the UK Government and far
away countries like New Zealand and Australia are, “being scrutinised by the Agricultural Trade
Commission after being made – what’s the point of that?”

Aled Jones NFU Cymru President also spoke to Nation.Cymru from the Winter Fair. He says that
Welsh farmers have been “betrayed” and sold down the river by the Westminster Government.
Jones, who farms near Caernarfon, reminds us that it’s been over six years since the vote to leave
the European Union.

He said: “One of the main characteristics of Brexit was the decision to plan our own policies after
leaving. We are now in the process of consulting on the Agriculture Bill (Wales) 2022 which is of
utmost importance.”

Like many others within the industry, Jones says, “I’m angry with the Westminster Government for
opening up our market,” when rushing through trade agreements with countries outside the
European Union.

Jones says he’s aware of the grace period put in place before some aspects of the trade agreements
kick in. “But at the end of the day Australia will have a quota free and toll-free access to our markets.

“Every other country, when they discuss trade agreements include clauses in order to protect their
own producers and industries. We’ve been betrayed and sold down the river by the Westminster
Government.”


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I.Humphrys
I.Humphrys
2 months ago

Why would supermarkets stop their (foul!) antics if Brexit hadn’t happened? Daft!

Julie Jones
Julie Jones
2 months ago

It was known pre-Brexit that withdrawing from the EU would clobber our famers financially and it would create space for the environmental Del Boys. Our rural economy is a sham.

Y Cymro
Y Cymro
2 months ago

This was predicted but nobody listened or heeded the warnings that Wales & Welsh farming would be adversely affected and suffer the most? See, if you blindly follow England over a cliff will often find that it’s you who will be the one to hits the ground first and the hardest. 😐

John Davis
John Davis
2 months ago

Oh dear. Seems it has been forgotten that Wales voted for Brexit, along with 53% of farmers nationally who also voted for it. People insisted they knew what they were voting for. Warnings were called Project Fear, dissenters were all Remoaners, remember. If anyone has betrayed Welsh farmers it’s the Welsh themselves, who handed their future over to a small band of hard right Tory Brexiteer zealots in Westminster in exchange for absolutely nothing in return. All in all, the resulting consequences are what any reasonably intelligent person who had bothered to do any research might have expected. If you… Read more »

Restless shade of the assassinated Tywysog Lloegr
Restless shade of the assassinated Tywysog Lloegr
2 months ago
Reply to  John Davis

Do we have to go through the whole “Wales voted for Brexit” fallacy again? An entity cannot vote. Analysis of the vote suggested that Brexit voters were in the majority in areas of heavy settlement by English people and the borders. It is a reasonable theory – with numbers attached – that the people of Cymru voted in the majority to remain, but were tilted the other way by the 20% of our population made up of English settlers. Of course many settlers voted remain and many Welsh folks voted leave, but “Wales voted leave” must never go unchallenged. I… Read more »

Cwm Rhondda
Cwm Rhondda
2 months ago

In my opinion your argument about ‘English settlers’ is flawed. A number of the English people I know in work are members of Yes Cymru and voted to remain. It is the Sun, Daily Express, and Daily Mail readers in the south Wales valleys (especially in Blaenau Gwent) that tipped the scales in favour of leaving the EU.

Y Tywysog Lloegr a Moscow
Y Tywysog Lloegr a Moscow
2 months ago
Reply to  Cwm Rhondda

In my opinion, your opinion is flawed. You will note that I acknowledged that many settlers (quotation marks not required. They settled here) voted remain and many Welsh (including my idiot older brother) voted Leave. I was talking statistically. You were talking anecdotally. Both are correct and there is no conflict between either statement except in understanding

Sorgina
Sorgina
2 months ago

As far as I recall, Welsh farmers were among the most vociferous supporters of Brexit. You got what you voted for. No sympathy.

Rhufawn Jones
Rhufawn Jones
2 months ago
Reply to  Sorgina

Yes. Very sad. Including my own immediate family I’m ashamed to say! Still in denial too.

Restless shade of the assassinated Tywysog Lloegr
Restless shade of the assassinated Tywysog Lloegr
2 months ago
Reply to  Sorgina

In the Marches I believe. The green wellied farmers of Mons (and possibly little England beyond Wales) Gwynedd and Ceredigion farmers tended to Remain

hdavies15
hdavies15
2 months ago

It seems that those in Wales who wish to attribute “blame” for the way the 2016 referendum went always focus on 2 groups – Farmers, despite evidence that there was a strong pro EU sentiment, and the post industrial impoverished working class communities mainly in South Wales valleys and parts of N.E Wales. Where is the anger and blame that needs to be aimed other segments of our communities and especially at politicians of all colours, pro and anti, who engaged in mindless rhetoric and deflection rather than factual debate? And they continue to do it today because shouting and… Read more »

nigel
nigel
2 months ago

the farmers got exactly what they voted for and now they dont like it

Mickey Hickey
Mickey Hickey
1 month ago

Farmers are a very small section of the overall voting population and should not be blamed for getting on the Brexit band wagon. How come the Welsh put their trust in anything the Anglo-Saxons wanted.

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