26 July 2002

Show a fine example

A NATIONWIDE extension of the sort of enthusiasm the rural community showed for the Royal Welsh Show could help rebuild the economy after foot-and-mouth disease.

Huge success

Edward Greenwell, president of the Country Land and Business Association, said the hugely successful event combined farmer self-help, traditional community spirit and interest in high quality local products. Accompanied by government aid these elements could revitalise the rural economy.

"The resident populations of villages, parishes and market towns of Wales could make a major contribution through a think local, buy local, act local campaign. We urge rural people to provide custom in local shops, and buy locally produced food and services."

Sir Edward said the Welsh assembly must fight to prevent farmers losing out from CAPreform. &#42

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being robbed by reform of the CAP, and to ensure that the UK to provide match funding for money switched away from production and into agri-environment and rural development. Failure to do so would blight plans to expand existing initiatives.

David Harden, Welsh chairman of the CLA, said whole communities, the Welsh language and culture were threatened unless the rural community was restored to health. Fostering organic farming could contribute, but oversupplying a niche market was a recipe for disaster.