The Welsh red meat industry is to be given £2.15 million to help it prepare for Brexit, First Minister Carwyn Jones has announced.
The investment, which comes from the Welsh Government’s £50 million EU Transition Fund, will help farmers to identify ways they can improve their businesses to become more competitive and trade profitably after the UK leaves the EU.
Another £100,000 has also been allocated for an import substitution project, which will identify and secure supply chains within the UK and encourage companies based in the EU to set up operations in Wales.
NFU Cymru and the Farmers’ Union of Wales (FUW) have welcomed the announcement.
NFU Cymru president John Davies said: “When we became aware of the details of the EU Transition Fund earlier this year, NFU Cymru raised the possibility of using the fund to provide support to the red meat sector in Wales, in a similar way to how the EU conditional aid scheme was used to help the dairy sector in 2017.
“We hope Welsh Government will now work with the industry to develop the detail of the scheme to ensure the information which will be required from producers is easily obtainable and that the support can make a meaningful difference on farm.”
FUW president Glyn Roberts said he was pleased one of the first EU Transition Fund projects to be announced related to the livestock sector, but added he hoped several more schemes to help the food and farming industries cope with Brexit would follow.
In England, MPs on the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Committee called on the Government to set up a similar fund to help farmers adapt to the post-Brexit world, but last month, Ministers rejected the recommendation.