Grants awarded as new beef scheme makes quick impact

A growing band of Welsh

farmers have been awarded cash grants to help buy top-quality

bulls in recent months.

The beef beneficiaries are the first to gain from a new Hybu Cig Cymru - Meat Promotion Wales (HCC) £2.2m scheme to boost the Welsh beef industry.

The Welsh Beef Quality

Improvement Project, which operates in Objective One areas using Objective One European funding, offers farmers a chance to secure grants worth 40% of their bull purchase.

The first to secure an award for a prize-winning bull was Glyn Griffiths, of Rhyd, Penrhyndeudraeth, who bought a

prize animal for 3,300 guineas at a Charolais bull sale in Welshpool.

Griffiths said: "The grant funding available provided me with the incentive to buy a bull that will maximise the genetic potential of my herd. The application process is quick and easy and the follow-up meeting helpful. It meant I could buy the bull I needed with the minimum of fuss."

Under the plan, which is

being delivered by HCC,

farmers are able to apply for

financial assistance for a number of

measures, including bull purchase and performance recording.

Dewi Hughes, HCC's

project co-ordinator said:

"Advisory meetings have attracted considerable interest from the

industry. Early evaluation

indicates participants consider the courses to be very valuable."

The scheme is part of a drive to improve the industry's

competitiveness. Further information on 01970 625050.