Celebrating Rural Development Success - Issue 04 Wales' Agriculture Sector with the aid RDP Funding


Sharing Success - Issue 04 Wales' Farming and Agriculture Sector 


Exciting News - Save the Date!!

coming soon

Celebrating Rural Conference 2022

Wales Rural Network are planning to return to normal with a bang with the first 'physical' conference since 2019.

The 9th & 10th June 2022 will see an event like no other before, taking place at the Royal Welsh Food Hall at the Showground in Builth Wells. This will be an exciting and interactive conference that will celebrate the achievements of all things Rural Development Funded.

So Save the date in your diary now!


Celebrating our Fabulous Farming Sector


Welcome to this month's edition of our 'Celebrating Rural' newsletter and this month we look at Wales' Farming and Agriculture.

Agriculture in Wales has in the past been a major part of the economy of Wales, due to Wales' mild, wet climate, only a small proportion of the land area being suitable for arable cropping, but grass for the grazing of livestock is present in abundance.

Farming plays a crucial role in giving nature a home in Wales - around 80 per cent of Welsh land is managed for farming in some way.

Welsh farmers are passionate about providing a huge variety of quality Welsh food for us all to enjoy. But farming is about much more than growing great food. Welsh farming is the cornerstone of the £22.1 billion (2019) Welsh food and drink industry.

The structure of the agricultural industry varies across the UK depending on a range of factors including climate, terrain and tradition. Wales is characterised by upland and mountainous topography and is subject to a wetter climate than much of the rest of the UK. As a result a large proportion of utilised land is considered as ‘less favourable areas’ or LFA land. Agriculture in Wales is heavily focused on the grazing of livestock, specifically sheep, on LFA land in comparatively small farm holdings that make relatively modest incomes.

The pattern of farming in Wales is dictated by a number of factors, the most important of which include:

Wales is more mountainous and has a wetter climate than much of the UK so much of the country is classified as LFA. The land is therefore more suited to pasture and livestock farming and not arable cropping;

The widespread highlands are more favourable towards sheep, specifically hardy Welsh Mountain sheep.

The dairy industry and arable farming are restricted to the more productive areas. These are predominantly in lowland areas in the southeast, northeast, coastal regions and river valleys.

In addition to the climate challenges and the battles sometimes faced due to the Welsh Landscape, levels of depression within the farming industry are thought to be increasing and suicide rates, particularly for males under 40, are among the highest in any occupational group.


The Royal Welsh Winter Fair is back!!

What better time to take a look at the successes of the RDP funded Farming & Agricultural sector than the month that sees the return to a full Winter Fair at the Royal Welsh Showground - 29th  - 30th November.

Rural Development Programme 2014 - 2020 Agricultural Funding Streams


Farm Business Grant - A financial contribution towards capital investment in equipment and machinery on farms.

Glastir - Glastir is a whole farm sustainable land management scheme.

European Innovation Partnership (EIP) Wales - Financial support for projects which encourage co-operation between research and practice.

Farming Connect - Our enhanced programme is providing support which is transforming the business prospects of thousands of farmers and foresters.

LEADER - Fostering knowledge transfer and innovation in agriculture, forestry, and rural
areas; Enhancing competitiveness of all types of agriculture and enhancing farm viability; Promoting food chain organisation and risk management in agriculture; Restoring, preserving and enhancing ecosystems dependent on agriculture and forestry; Promoting resource efficiency and supporting the shift towards a low carbon and climate resilient economy in agriculture, food and forestry sectors.

Rural Payments Wales (RPW) Online

Sector Success Stories & Case Studies


Video Stories

Digital Farming - innovative GEOM project to explore how relevant data can be captured and presented as useful information to farmers. (LEADER)

Hendre Ifan Goch Farm - Improving soil and livestock management to improve soil carbon capture Hendre Ifan Goch, will look to reduce their carbon footprint and aim towards becoming carbon neutral.

(Farming Connect)

Comparison of the relative environmental benefits of low impact machinery in small scale farm woodlands - investigating the benefits of low impact machinery to identify the most appropriate methods of minimising environmental disturbance.

(EIP Wales)

Rural Development Programme Case Studies from the Agriculture and Forestry Sector - Learn how the Pastures for Pollinators project helped a dairy farm become more environmentally aware and a horse logging business improves their access to woodland.



Launch of ‘Damara Môn’ lamb promises distinct eating experience

Damara is the UK’s newest sheep breed, originating from Africa and the Middle East and recognised for their distinct tail and unique hide markings. The first progeny born earlier in 2020 have adapted well to Anglesey’s weather.


EIP WALES – bringing practical and scientific backgrounds together to benefit the wider industry

Since it was first launched in 2016, EIP (European Innovation Partnership) Wales has enabled more than 200 individuals working at the grass roots level of the agricultural industry to benefit from the latest technologies and scientific outcomes from academic and scientific experts throughout the world.


Fit For Farming

Conwy Cynhaliol approved a cooperation project with Farming Community Network (FCN) and produced a bilingual booklet that would target farmers who were working in isolation. The bilingual booklet which was distributed to every farm holding in Conwy, will aim to improve health, wellbeing and self-esteem of farmers living in the rural areas of Conwy.


It’s okay to talk, it’s important to listen, and don’t be judgemental…Farming Connect puts mental health first aid on the rural agenda

In a bid to promote awareness of mental health in rural communities and tackle the stigma surrounding this sensitive issue.


Addington Fund
01926 620135

DPJ Foundation
0800 587 4262

FCN (The Farming Community Network)
03000 111 999

RABI (Royal Agricultural Benevolent Institution)
0800 188 4444

Tir Dewi (Carmarthenshire, Ceredigion and Pembrokeshire)
0800 121 4722



Wales Rural Network News provides a round-up of news, information and networking opportunities relating to the Welsh Government Rural Communities – Rural Development Programme 2014-2020. It helps to facilitate the sharing of common issues and examples of good practice within Wales, the UK and Europe. If you have items to contribute which are related to rural development in Wales, please contact Ruralnetwork@gov.wales


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