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John Davies, Welsh Meat Company director
"We have to work together"
 real 56k

Tuesday, 7 November, 2000, 10:16 GMT
Meat plants plan will help farmers
Inside a meat processing plant
The plants could boost farmers' incomes
A new farmers' co-operative has announced plans to build two meat processing plants in Wales.

Initial efforts to establish The Welsh Meat Company failed, but now the organisers say they have raised a quarter of a million pounds and can build the plants which will boost farmers' incomes.

Welsh Meat Company logo
Plans to establish the Welsh Meat Company failed
It was feared that the latest idea to help the struggling livestock industry had been lost after controversial plans to set up a public limited company buying and processing animals failed to attract enough farmers as investors.

However, a new 500-member farmers' co-operative will now build meat processing plants at Horeb in Ceredigion and at Caernarfon in Gwynedd.

The co-operative will team up with two of Wales's leading abattoirs - Oriel Jones at Llanybydder and Cwmni Cig Arfon in Caernarfon - and is being backed by the National Assembly for Wales.

The new plants will process the cheaper cuts of lamb and beef into higher value products like sausages and burgers.

Too few shareholders

This will give farmers a better return for their livestock.

In July, Assembly First Secretary Rhodri Morgan expressed his disappointment at the poor take-up of the scheme to get the Welsh Meat Company off the ground.

Just 700 of Wales's 17,000 farmers were prepared to contribute the 250 needed to launch the company.

The scheme required 1,000 shareholders to start up.

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See also:

31 Oct 00 | Wales
Welsh lamb back on forces' menu
19 May 00 | Wales
Doubts over cattle venture
24 Aug 99 | Wales
Meat plant offers industry hope
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