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Farming

‘Social media senssation’ to star at Winter Fair

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Chris Roberts: Cooking Welsh lamb on an Asado

HYBU CIG CYMRU – Meat Promotion Wales (HCC) will host two exciting events as part of its activities at the forthcoming Royal Welsh Winter Fair in Builth Wells, to highlight the opportunities for Welsh red meat in the domestic market.

One of the highlights at the HCC stand this year will be a Christmas dinner made from all Welsh produce.

The dinner which will take place on Monday, November 27 from 1pm at the HCC stand in the South Glamorgan Hall, will include a starter, main course including accompaniments and a pudding all sourced from Welsh producers.

A mouth-watering starter of Conwy Mussels steamed with Welsh Cider and Trealy Farm Sweet Smoked Paprika Chorizo will kick off the meal and this session will be hosted by Jason Hughes, from the Culinary Association of Wales Senior Team, and Head Chef at Chateau Rhianfa in Anglesey.

A main course of succulent roast rib of PGI Welsh Beef served with gravy enriched with Welsh red wine will then follow. Amongst the delicious accompaniments for this course will be pigs in blankets using pork produced in Wales, dauphinoise and crispy roast potatoes made with Welsh potatoes and crispy parsnips coated in a Welsh honey glaze.

The main course will be prepared and cooked by Elwen Roberts, Consumer Executive at HCC, who will demonstrate easy to follow cooking methods with the recipes ensuring that people of all ages can emulate the Welsh Christmas Dinner at home.

Elwen commented: “The Welsh Christmas dinner will take the audience through a step by step guide from starter to pudding – using outstanding Welsh produce. The recipes are designed to be easy to recreate at home and highlight the outstanding quality of food we have here in Wales. What better time to celebrate this than at Christmas!”

Jason Hughes will return once again to prepare a pudding made from Denbigh plums providing a scrumptious end to the Christmas dinner theme.

Over at the main entrance of the Showground, HCC will also be showcasing the best of Welsh produce with social media star Chris Roberts, who will be cooking Welsh Lamb on an Asado for both days of the Winter Fair. Chris, who is well known for his alfresco cooking in his Facebook videos currently has over 12,000 followers.

Chris said: “It’s great that Hybu Cig Cymru have asked me to be involved at the Winter Fair and I’m delighted to take part. I’m passionate about cooking Welsh Lamb on an Asado and in particular I love cooking outdoors so this is the perfect opportunity for me and I look forward to seeing everyone there!”

Farming

Access to EU Single Market and Customs Union critical for rural Wales

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Brian Thomas: ​​FUW Deputy President

N​EWS that Northern Ireland could be granted access to the European Single Market and Customs Union shows that it is possible to achieve what the Farmers’ Union of Wales has been calling for since the EU referendum.

Speaking from his farm in Pembrokeshire, ​​FUW Deputy President Brian Thomas said: “Different parts of the UK can’t be treated differently and we therefore call on the UK government to ensure that Wales, given its heavy reliance on red meat exports to the EU, is given the same treatment. Should this deal be offered and come to fruition we fully expect to have the same offered to us.

“In the farming community there is a real sense of worry, alarm and anger about the state of Brexit negotiations, and how the current state of play compares to what was promised by many before the referendum.

“And whilst we recognise that the Irish border situation presents some unique challenges that need to be overcome, rural Wales has challenges of its own, such the economic challenges we have long highlighted. We need to recognise the impact that failure to secure such access and reach agreement for Wales could have. Denying Wales access to the Single Market and Customs Union would have catastrophic consequences, as recently highlighted in scenarios from the FAPRI and Horizon reports.”

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Farming

Farmers from Wales and Oz join forces to showcase ‘lightning lamb’

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Jamie Heinrich and Richard Roderick: At the HCC lightning lamb cookoff

A ‘LIGHTNING LAMB’ cooking challenge featuring award-winning sheep farmers from both sides of the globe was one of the highlights of the recent Royal Welsh Winter Fair in Builth Wells.

Surveys show that families in Britain have only 32 minutes on average to prepare an evening meal nowadays, as opposed to an hour in 1980. Hybu Cig Cymru – Meat Promotion Wales (HCC) is taking steps to emphasise lamb’s quick-cook credentials, so enlisted the help of Australian farmer Jamie Heinrich and Breconshire’s own Richard Roderick in a ‘cookoff’ to prove it!

Jamie Heinrich hails from Kangaroo Island near Adelaide in South Australia, and operates a 2000-acre holding farming Poll Merino and White Suffolk sheep. His visit to Wales is part of a Nuffield Australia scholarship to study how to encourage young entrants to the industry.

Richard Roderick lives at Newton Farm near Talybont-on-Usk in the Brecon Beacons. He is a past HCC Scholar, and has won several farming accolades including the Silver Lapwing Award in 2016 for his environmental management. Earlier this year he featured on the BBC series ‘Nadiya’s British Food Adventure’.

With the help of HCC cook Elwen Roberts, Jamie rustled up a rapid Welsh Lamb stir-fry with oriental flavours, while Richard’s creation was a pan-fried leg steak with red wine sauce. After tasting and judging by members of the audience, the two delicious dishes could not be separated, so the Wales vs Australia match ended in an honourable draw.

“When I came over to Wales I certainly didn’t anticipate getting involved in a cookoff to promote lamb!” said Nuffield Australia Scholar Jamie Heinrich. “Many of the challenges for the industry – recruiting younger farmers and making sure that lamb is appealing to young consumers who are pushed for time – are the same the world over. I’m very much looking forward to the rest of my trip to Wales and Europe.”

HCC’s Elwen Roberts commented: “It was great fun to challenge two farmers to come up with a quick and tasty lamb recipe. They both did extremely well, and the Winter Fair audience loved seeing and tasting the food.”

“It’s important to emphasise that lamb can be an excellent choice for a quick evening meal,” she added. “HCC has recently launched a mobile-phone-friendly recipe selector on the eatwelshlamb.com website, to help give consumers inspiration for lamb dishes while on the move.”

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Farming

Food Centre Wales at the Farm Business Innovation show

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Arwyn Davies, Business Development Manager: With Angela Sawyer, Senior Food Technologist, Food Centre Wales

THE FOOD CENTREA WALES team were at the Farm Business Innovation show 2017 offering advice and support to businesses in the food and drinks industry.

The event held on November​ 8-9​ in Birmingham highlighted the continued interest in adding value to farm produce, particularly in Wales.

Arwyn Davies, Business Development Manager at Food Centre Wales, said​:​ “As this was the first time we had exhibited at the Farm Business Innovation show. We went in with an open mind, but we are pleased to report that it was a very successful two days. We spoke to many farm owners during the two days, many of whom were from Wales.”

Arwyn Davies’ talk on ‘Farm Diversification into Food Processing – Exploring Opportunities & Avoiding Pitfalls’ was very popular with every seat taken.

Councillor Gareth Lloyd, Cabinet Member with responsibility for Economic and Community Development said​:​ “The Team at Food Centre Wales were interested to hear all the ideas and plans people had for diversifying their farm businesses. The Centre’s food technologists were on hand to offer advice on how farmers could add value to their food produce and what could be done do to help them along the process. If you didn’t get a change to call in at the stand, the Team are more than happy to help at the Centre.”

Food Centre Wales will be following up with inquiries received at the show, with the aim to help many develop their food products and reach new markets.

If you would like to know more about how Food Centre Wales can help you, get in touch by phone 01559 362230 or email gen@foodcentrewales.org.uk.

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