Carmarthenshire dairy farmer Brian Walters has been honoured with the FUW-HSBC outstanding services to Welsh dairy industry award at the Welsh Dairy Show in Carmarthen.

His passion for the dairy industry and endless voluntary contributions for over 30 years made him a clear winner in the eyes of the judges.

FUW senior policy officer Dr Hazel Wright, who sat on the judging panel with Colin Evans, chairman of Dairy Show committee, and Sarah Raymond, agriculture relationship manager of HSBC, said: “Brian is a true champion of the dairy industry and we thank him for all the contributions he has made over the years.

“Although he recently retired from the union’s presidential team, his wealth of experience continues to be a valuable asset to the union and this is evidenced in that he was recently co-opted onto the union’s central milk and dairy produce committee. The award is very well deserved indeed.”

Brian Walters farms 500 acres at, Clunmelyn, Ffynnonddrain, Carmarthen, with his wife Ann and two sons, Aled and Seimon. Here the family run a dairy herd of 220 cows with 200 followers, some of which are pedigree Ayrshires, on an autumn block calving system with an emphasis on milk off grass.

The family further keep 100 beef cattle and also run a self- catering farmhouse holiday unit, taking pride in educating the occupants on the problems and joys of farming.

David Waters, the FUW’s county executive officer in Carmarthen, congratulated Brian on his achievements: “There are not many people who don’t know Brian. He has given so much to the dairy industry, sharing his knowledge and experience and I am sure the 18 students from Gelli Aur Agricultural College, who have had the pleasure of working with him on the farm over the past 20 years, in a work experience capacity, will agree.

“Over the years he has spoken passionately about the closure of dairy factories, such Newcastle Emlyn and Llangadog, highlighting the implications of the closure on farmers and the farming community generally, always emphasising why farming matters - he really has made a difference to the dairy industry in Wales and I congratulate him on winning this award.”

Brian, is also a passionate and committed supporter of the FUW, and has been a member since he started farming. He became county vice-chairman for Carmarthenshire in 1995, and its chairman in 1997. He is a past chairman of the union’s central, milk and dairy produce committee, being its chairman from 1996-2000. Brian also held the role of vice-president of the FUW from 2000-2017. During that period he represented the union on European Milk Board meetings in Brussels.