HCC chief visits Brussels to discuss future of lamb industry

Gwyn Howells, chief executive of Hybu Cig Cymru – Meat Promotion Wales (HCC) is this week in Brussels, representing Wales in meetings with key representatives of the EU Commission and the lamb industry across Europe.

A scheduled meeting of the EU Sheep Meat Forum is taking place in the Belgian capital, against the backdrop of discussions surrounding the next steps for the UK’s withdrawal from the European Union.

HCC’s Gwyn Howells said, “This week’s meeting of the EU Sheep Meat Forum comes at an opportune time. The European Referendum result has led to a great deal of uncertainty, but HCC is determined that the needs of the Welsh red meat industry should be a key part of discussions about the next steps.”

Gwyn Howells emphasised that HCC would strive to ensure the continuation of trade without disruption in the short term, and press for the best possible trading terms for Welsh red meat. He added, “Exports will continue to be essential for our farmers – especially in the lamb sector. As well as redoubling our efforts to open up new markets throughout the world, HCC will be working to maintain relationships with existing partners in Europe so far.

“This week is a chance to explore how the Commission and meat industry figures from across the continent are approaching the current uncertainty, and to emphasise the continuing importance of European export markets for PGI Welsh Lamb.”