WELSH FARMERS could benefit from a £12,000 Hybu Cig Cymru (Meat Promotion Wales) funded series of study tours.

The aim is to help farmers look at how others are successfully battling against rising production costs on similar types of farms.

The initiative follows publication of the results of a number of production cost surveys in Wales indicating that many beef and sheep farmers had scant knowledge of what it cost them to produce a lamb, suckled calf or finished beef animal.

In particular the research showed that fixed costs were often under-estimated or ignored when farmers assessed the success of their enterprises.

Over the next six months four groups of between 15 and 30 farmers will be able to make subsidised four-day tours of units like their own.

Each group can claim up to 50% of eligible costs to a maximum of £3000.

Tour applications will be judged their potential for increasing the efficiency and competitiveness of the farmers involved.

“It is a great opportunity for farmers to link up and discover how their counterparts in other areas are containing rising costs,” said Prys Morgan HCC‘s industry development manager.

Successful groups will get help with benchmarking their own enterprises for comparison with the units visited, and will be expected to come up with ideas for implementing the things learned.

Potential group leaders have to submit applications to HCC‘s Aberystwyth offices by October 18.

“If the scheme is successful it could become a regular fixture on our activity programme,” Mr Morgan added.