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Young Farmer Focus: Verity Hyland - 'I was lucky enough to take part in the YFC travel programme'

Verity Hyland, 26, is chairwoman of Calderdale YFC and works as an event manager. She also helps co-manage a beef and sheep farm in the hills of West Yorkshire with her parents, where her Zwartbles flock has just finished lambing.

Travel: The National Federation of Young Farmers Clubs (NFYFC) has played an important part in my life, being an active founder member of Calderdale YFC, which has been running for the last 15 years.

 

Over the years I have held many positions in the club, with my current role as chairwoman.

 

I was lucky enough to take part in the YFC travel programme in 2015 for a trip of a lifetime to India with 10 other national members.

 

We stayed in the Indian farming families’ homes, which allowed us to learn and gain an understanding of their farming practices and how they differ from the UK.

 

Most farmers grow crops such as tomatoes and chillies, and are dairy farmers with cows and buffalo.

 

Calves are kept on the mothers, which is a very different practice to the UK, which instead sees them being taken off at a day old.

 

It opened my eyes into how farming differs enormously depending where in the world you farm.

 

The cow in India is a sacred animal, so when it has finished farming, it is released into the wild, which accounts for all the cows you see roaming the roads.


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AGM: I often caught up with the fellow members who I met on the trip at the NFYFC’s annual AGM weekend. This event has now been cancelled – let’s see how this impacts the future of YFC.

 

My club is, however, busy planning and organising this year’s district rally.

 

It ties in nicely with my career as an event manager, where I organise large scale conferences all over the world.

 

Competitions, such as public speaking and debating through YFC and university, have given me the confidence and ability to understand how to talk to people, which is vital to my profession.

 

Passion: In my leisure time I co-manage a beef and sheep farm in the hills of West Yorkshire with my parents, where my Zwartbles flock has just finished lambing.

 

They are crossed to a Beltex tup for the shapely lambs required for private selling. Calving has begun for the mixed suckler herd, which we will keep for 18 months and sell as stores, as being 305 metres (1,000 feet) above sea level, we are unable to finish them ourselves.

 

My passion for agriculture started at a young age, when I would help to milk on my grandfather’s dairy farm.

 

This led me to study agriculture and graduate from Harper Adams in 2014.

 

I am extremely lucky that I have the best of both worlds in that my job allows me to travel.

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