Food and Drink Wales Industry Board Newsletter

1 June 2020

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“The Food and Drink Wales Industry Board exists to champion food and drink in Wales and during this unprecedented Covid-19 crisis, our aim as a Board is to bring you concise, relevant and up-to-date information to keep you well informed during this time.

FDWIB - Andy Richardson

Following the recent announcement made by the Welsh Government on 29 May, Wales is set to begin a new phase in the battle against coronavirus alongside the new strategy - Test Trace Protect – an evolving approach that is dedicated to continuing to protect the Welsh public from contracting and spreading the virus.

The Welsh Government has also advised businesses across the nation to start to prepare for reopening in the future – at a date that will be evaluated in three weeks-time.

For now, we encourage you to access the resources provided by Food Innovation Wales, the Food and Drink Federation and the Food Standards Agency on best reopening practices ensuring your business and the industry as a whole is well prepared for future outcomes.”

Andy Richardson, Chair of the Food and Drink Wales Industry Board

Latest on Covid-19 for food and drink businesses

Top news stories of the week

Recent key actions from the Board

  • We have hosted our weekly in-depth conference call with our Board members and senior Welsh Government colleagues to look at the challenges and opportunities presented by Covid-19. We have invited sector experts into these meetings to provide additional insight to these issues.
  • The Board received a briefing on market insight, changing consumer behaviour and future impact planning. This contained vital information on how the food and drink industry in Wales can prepare and innovate in the future – providing us with the required insight to share with Welsh Government on protecting the sustainability of the industry and ensuring the industry in Wales remains a priority in recovery planning.
  • The Board was also briefed on insight and data from Welsh food and drink businesses via partners at Food Innovation Wales. The information presented covered the disruption of the current food and drink supply chain and how businesses and industry leaders must look three to six months ahead to accommodate the challenges presented as a result of Covid-19. It was also suggested, businesses should adapt to online sales in order to adapt to the new consumer behavior and climate post-coronavirus.
  • We continue to engage with both Welsh and UK Government regarding the timing and impact of Brexit, in light of the many food and drink businesses already suffering hardship due to the coronavirus situation.
  • We engaged and connected with all cluster groups for sector-specific insight and actions on current opportunities and challenges across the industry.
  • The Board is supporting the Food and Drink Federation’s  #HiddenHeroes campaign which aims to promote all the food and drink workers continuing to keep the nation fed during the coronavirus pandemic and pays tribute to those working across the supply chain.
  • We have continued to share links to information, support and toolkits via Twitter and LinkedIn as well as supporting with social media toolkits.

Voices from the industry with Tanya Morgan, co-owner and founder, Myrddin Heritage

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Myrddin Heritage, based in Rhos, Llandysul is a smallholding pig farm business set up by my husband Owen and I. Our story began in 2013 when I bought Owen two pigs as a birthday surprise. We had enough land to look after them outside our static caravan at the time and the experience made us realise, we craved an outdoor lifestyle and that office-based jobs weren’t for us. Neither of us came from farming backgrounds however, so we decided to travel around Australia working on different pig farms to gain the experience we needed to start our own.

We returned to Wales in 2017 to find our own smallholding and start breeding rare breed, free range pigs with plenty of space for the animals to root, graze and forage.

We handmake all our own products in our 5-star unit in Llampumsaint and deliver across Wales. Our most well-known product is our sausages, which are all made from prime cuts of meat. At the beginning of March, 2020 we were selling our sausages, chorizo, burgers and Pwdin Du (black pudding) to 40 restaurants, hotels, delis and shops across South and west Wales.

Covid 19 has had a major impact for us, with 95 per cent of our business disappearing almost overnight at the start of the pandemic when the hospitality industry shut down.

We had to adapt and innovate quickly and launched Myrddin Heritage & Friends Breakfast Boxes, supplying local, free-range organic breakfast products directly to consumers, in partnership with other suppliers. We’ve grown from one customer a week at the beginning of March to now selling 130 breakfast boxes a week around South and West Wales.

We haven’t yet qualified for any Government financial support, and we are also owed money from restaurants who had to close due to the pandemic.

Diversifying our business into Myrddin Heritage & Friends does mean we now work in partnership with nine local food suppliers and spend an average of £1,300 a week with these businesses, which is really welcomed in these difficult times. We are pushed to our limit and are working very hard to support as many local businesses as we can. Smaller businesses need backing from the Government to continue supporting local Welsh suppliers and economies, despite the challenges ahead.

Stay connected for updates on Twitter and LinkedIn. Join our Facebook Group to collaborate workforce. Get in touch with us via email at



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