25 May 1999
Veggie Welsh minister vows to stay

CHRISTINE GWYTHER, the Welsh agriculture secretary who is a vegetarian, has refused to resign despite facing a barrage of opposition to her appointment.

Bob Parry, president of the Farmers Union of Wales, yesterday walked out of a meeting with Ms Gwyther which had been held to defuse the row over her position.

Mr Parry said someone who does not eat meat could not support the industry.

Ms Gwyther said she was not a “naïve vegetarian” and would do her utmost for farmers in Wales, despite not having eaten meat for 20 years.

Other farmers leaders stayed in the meeting, leaving Alun Michael, the first secretary of the Welsh assembly, to say most people supported her.