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Public support for UK farming industry continues to grow.

THE amount of people backing Welsh and British farming has increased for the fifth year running according to a NFU-commissioned survey from OnePoll.

NFU Cymru says the survey results underline how valuable the farming sector is to this country.

An overwhelming majority of Welsh respondents actively support farming, with 72% saying they have a favourable or very favourable view of Welsh and British farmers - a rise of 17% since 2012.

The survey also found that 91% of Welsh respondents think farming is important to the economy.

The survey also asked the Welsh public what they thought of farm support payments to farmers. As many as 67% agree that farmers should continue to receive this support - an increase of 19% since 2012. NFU Cymru president, Stephen James said, "The public support is extremely important to the Welsh and British farming industry - a message which won't go unnoticed to politicians and retailers.

"To see the figures on public support for our sector increase year after year reassures me that there is a bright future for farmers in this country.

"The survey results show the public does understand the importance of farming to the economy; the food and farming industry is the biggest manufacturing sector and the fact that people are noticing how vital this is, is a massive asset to us, as farmers."

He said the statistics are a testament to the industry. "We saw thousands of people visit farms across the country as farmers threw open their farm gates to talk to the public about what they do as part of Open Farm Sunday. Without this event and the positive attitude from farmers, many thousands of people may not be active supporters of our sector.

John Davies, NFU Cymru deputy president, added: "Welsh farming has a hugely positive story to tell and these figures really support and complement our recent celebration of Welsh food event in the Senedd, where we highlighted the world-class food industry we have in Wales.

"It is clear that Wales as a nation is extremely proud of our farming industry and values our contribution and we are extremely grateful for their ongoing support."

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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:Western Mail (Cardiff, Wales)
Date:Jun 28, 2016
Words:356
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