Food Festival Funding 2014

22 Oct

One of my regular questions is when will a decision be made about food festival funding for 2014. The problem is trying to get an answer!!! Although I’m not going to stop asking this question, follows is yesterday’s response:

 A Welsh Government spokesperson said:

“We are not yet in a position to comment on food festival funding in 2014.”

I went back and asked when they’d ‘be in a position to comment’ to be told:

I don’t think that information is available yet.

Well bully for wag. Not only can’t they answer the question they cannot or will not even give me a timeline on it. So as I have little ‘proper paid-for work’ to do here, I guess my only option is that I’ll keep chasing them for a response. Meanwhile I can only say sorry for those organisers whose festivals are hopefully running early next year but I’ve done my best. My suggestion would be that those organisers email or phone your Assembly Members and put pressure on them to get this matter out in the open for once.

I am cross and utterly fed-up of going over the same issues with wag food year after year with few improvements being made. I fail to understand why wag cannot accept that the bulk of their work is meaningless, worthless and to top it all – it’s expensive. Is it too difficult for their civil servants, working in their glass offices, to put themselves in the position of a festival organiser, particularly a festival running in April, May or June next year? Why would an organiser gamble as to whether they will get funding or not from wag? Why would an organiser want the additional hassle of not knowing if, or when, wag might fund them and then under what criteria. Gosh, it’s stressful enough for organisers that are council employees and are paid for their efforts, but why would a volunteer choose to put themselves through that, with virtually no support from the wag food department? In my view wag, I don’t think you deserve such good organisers when you cannot treat them with the respect and courtesy they deserve.

I find this practice of chasing wag to find out about food festival funding totally pointless and such a waste of time.


You really could never run a business as wag food run their department.


If only wag food could learn just one lesson that communication is the key…………………………………..


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  1. Wales

    October 22, 2013 at 10:53 am

    wag learn lessons? Give over Kath – you’re expecting the impossible
    My take is that this department is flawed. It’s not producers first, it’s their favourite companies first and always has been. If your face fits with wag food you are ok. It’s worse for you guys though and us micro & small producers, but there is growth to be had with these two groups if the right help was offered.
    I don’t know where wag get their advice from but if it was from you and your team we’d make some progress and get somewhere.
    Thanks for finding out so much for us, don’t like learning how much is hidden though.

  2. beer boy

    October 23, 2013 at 9:27 am

    I agree with much of Wales’ comment.
    There is no hope at all that we can instigate changes in this department because as your rightly say, they don’t talk to us, well those that would tell them the truth, which wouldn’t be many, and they don’t listen to you or support you.
    We are a lost cause.
    Wag don’t see the importance of sorting out the food festival budget early and those event running early have a nightmare. We lost Peter James’ festival in Powys because funding for his early festival. That festival was never a big money earner, but sure wasn’t bad. It was a happy, friendly event and a good warmer-upper for the start of the season. I didn’t think we could lose a quality festival like this but wag couldn’t care less, as always is the case.
    I don’t agree with Wales telling you to give up because selfishly we’d then know nothing at all about what’s going on would we? It’s wrong of me and others to say keep going but no-one else is on our side.

  3. trader

    October 23, 2013 at 10:37 am

    Why don’t you just take you time wag and announce your festival plans when you are good and ready? That’s the best way forward for you after all. Take no concern over those organisers that are running early and working for your department for free, don’t giver them a thought.
    Carry on as you always have done, ignoring those that a are supporting local food off their own bat.
    wag seem happy to waste your time Kath and I can’t see what this achieves for anyone apart from showing us they are in control, although without much direction.

  4. Producer

    October 23, 2013 at 3:19 pm

    wag must read this site each day, so why they can’t understand what we feel about things like this is beyond comprehension.
    One frequently used phrase on here is you couldn’t run a business like our food department or government, and that is very true.
    Why they can’t listen and change their attitude to their work is depressing.

  5. Jam Man

    October 24, 2013 at 9:52 am

    This government spins and spins saying they are promoting Welsh food, but that’s much of their substance, pure spin.
    Wag pay lip service to food with various statements which mean little, they say they are supporting food festivals again this year, but no-one picks up, apart from on here, that this budget has been slashed year upon year.
    I haven’t a clue why food gets left behind in Wales.
    Why do wag treat their organisers so badly? Can’t they grasp that these people need to know where they stand, they need to plan, have their meetings and make decisions, but how can they do this if they don’t know about any funding coming through? Wag leaves them daggling every time.
    I’ve have problems with a couple of organisers in the past, but let’s be fair, they don’t need this hassle every year because wag can’t get its act together.
    It’s a shambles, nothing short of a shambles.
    Why volunteers put themselves through this to organise a food festival for wag is something else.
    Not anything I’d do!

  6. trade

    October 24, 2013 at 10:53 am

    Gee whiz we are in a mess with food.
    Wag have to be on this site all day, every day, apart from weekends of course, we’re not paying them then. But if wag can’t comprehend what is being written and said, then we are in a mess.
    So often people say it’s not rocket science, but that’s how wag food make it.
    Wag have never talked to us and never listened either, so how can our lot improve?
    Thank heavens that this site and the team have taken the time and effort to work with us and for us, and at their own expense.
    How galling it must be for them to see so many brown nosed food companies getting government and European money for doing next to nothing.

  7. producer

    October 25, 2013 at 3:19 pm

    Let’s hope that the new guy shakes this department up until it rattles
    If wag food cannot focus on food and food producers then they should all be looking elsewhere for work

  8. MM

    October 28, 2013 at 12:35 pm

    If you can improve this department – you’ll deserve a medal.
    You trying to talk to civil servants which is the end of the story as I see it.
    If they had to sell before they earned their money they’d understand us as you and the team there do. With civil servants and politicians it is hopeless, totally hopeless.

  9. Benji7???

    October 28, 2013 at 4:41 pm

    Food festivals are important to many producers and this continued sloppiness by wag is not good enough
    It’s thoughtless and as for those organisers putting up with such a silly department makes me wonder why they bother

  10. producer 3

    October 29, 2013 at 4:55 pm

    I don’t envy the new guy whose now Head of this department he’s more than got his work cut out sorting this shambles out.
    Hope he is capable of listening and talking to you and learning through you about us.

  11. trader

    October 30, 2013 at 12:35 pm

    wag food just haven’t worked for producers or food festival organisers we’ve never been their priority
    I am appalled how we are treated

  12. trader

    November 8, 2013 at 4:38 pm

    I hate to sound negative after all the hard work you’ve put in for food over the years, but I honestly don’t think you stand a hope in h – – – of changing wag food or HCC. They believe they are doing a good job but a secret ballot from producers and butchers might give them a different message.
    Both I think need a monumental shake-up and put producers, butchers and welsh people first.

  13. Benji7???

    November 8, 2013 at 4:41 pm

    Your views are valued and I’d rather have them honestly than not.
    Hadn’t thought of a secret ballot though…………..