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Mole Valley Farmers helps champion the future of young farmers in Europe

Young Farmers are set to make waves in Europe now that NFYFC has received year-long sponsorship from farmer owned, Mole Valley Farmers to become full members of the European Council of Young Farmers (CEJA).

The National Federation of Young Farmers’ Clubs (NFYFC)

English and Welsh Young Farmers will now have a stronger voice within European agriculture, particularly important during the CAP reform process. The NFYFC agriculture committee felt strongly that they should be active again in Europe and are delighted to have both sponsorship and able representatives to fight the corner for fellow young farmers.

CEJA’s main objective is to promote a young, innovative agricultural sector and create good working and living conditions for young people in the industry. With the average age of farmers increasing rapidly, it is more important than ever to support young entrants. Currently for every one farmer under the age of 35 in the UK, there are 20 over 55.

Katherine Sealy, NFYFC CEJA representative, believes that the future is looking brighter for young farmers across Europe;

“2011 was an active year for CEJA and the fact that the Commission’s CAP reform proposals have such a strong theme of generational renewal shows that perseverance pays off! CEJA also joined the World Farming Organisation and is starting to be more active within that organisation. This is a great time for NFYFC to be getting involved with CEJA once again.”

Fellow CEJA representative and Wales YFC member Jonathan Williams agrees;

“It’s fantastic that NFYFC are now full members, due to our membership size we have the potential to be major players in European decisions,” explains Jonny Williams, NFYFC representative in CEJA.

As full members NFYFC representatives will have the opportunity to attend meetings and seminars in Europe and gain a better understanding of European farming methods and politics. The position also gives them the chance to engage with agricultural ministers and members of the European Parliament and represent the needs of English and Welsh Young Farmers directly with the Agricultural Commission.

NFYFC National Chairman, James Williams, believes this is a fantastic opportunity for the organisation;

“I’m delighted that during my chairmanship, NFYFC has become a full member of CEJA. This membership will allow us to actively lobby on real life issues that affect our members and be at the centre of the debate regarding European Agricultural Policy for young farmers. Attending CEJA meetings and seminars will support a great deal of knowledge transfer which in turn should strengthen our organisation.”

Devon based Mole Valley Farmers have supported Young Farmer’s Clubs for a number of years and sees this support as a cementing of relationships between the two organisations.

‘Mole Valley Farmers are owned by the Farming Community, this support is about investing in the future of farming, ensuring the next generation have a voice that can be heard in the political arena of agriculture. We have a new generation of educated, dedicated young farmers who are passionate about shaping the future of farming within the UK. It is important that we listen to their views, support, educate and share best practice to help them navigate future volatility and ensure a sustainable industry for years to come.’ comments Keith Ockenden, Head of Agriculture, Mole Valley Farmers.


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