Speculation is mounting over the next NFU dairy board chairman following the election of Gwyn Jones as union vice-president.
Dairy board chairman Mr Jones was elected NFU vice-president following the union’s AGM in Birmingham on Wednesday (24 February).
He emerged victorious from a field of 10 candidates that included NFU livestock board chairman Alistair Mackintosh.
Mr Jones, who milks 750 cows in partnership on heavy weald clay in West Sussex, begins his new role immediately.
But he will also remain dairy board chairman until 24 March – the date he was due to step down after six years in the post
The new chairman will be chosen by 12 dairy board members.
Mr Jones’ election to vice-president has meant an early focus on his possible successor. The board already includes a number of high-profile names within the sector.
They include Welsh farmer Mansel Raymond, chairman of NFU Cymru Dairy and brother of NFU deputy president Meurig Raymond.
North Gloucestershire milk producer Rob Harrison, who founded the Next Generation Dairy Board for young farmers, is another high-profile member.
A full list of dairy board members can be viewed here, although it will change before the March meeting, as some members are stepping down and others were not re-elected.
Mr Jones was born into a farming family in North Wales and trained as an engineer with Rolls Royce before returning to agriculture.
After graduation, Mr Jones moved with his wife Lorayne and daughters Elin and Gwenan, to Moulton College of Agriculture, Northamptonshire.
He ran the college’s beef and sheep units before arriving at Crouchlands Farm in West Sussex as farm manager 30 years ago.