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Food and Drink Wales Industry Board

03 Mar

There’s concern from quite a few of you, emailing and calling into our office and asking what is happening with the proposed Food and Drink Wales Industry Board. Well dear readers, if there was any constructive news about this board, I can assure I would have posted here on welshfoodbites and told our Best Of Welsh & Borders producers by email.

So unfortunately there’s no news at all, only a great deal of gossip. I last posted on this topic on 19th Dec and I’ve copied that post below so you can refresh your memories. The gist of the story to date is that people were asked to put themselves forward for this board, then have an interview, with the first meeting scheduled for the 8th December.

You’ll not be surprised to learn that not only was the 8th December meeting cancelled at the 11th hour, but no further meeting has since been arranged or held. As far as I’m aware, the Board, has still not been formed as we move into March.

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, you could never run a business like this  and at the risk of repeating myself once again,  communication, for me at least, is still the key. This industry will not exist without our Welsh food and drink producers still wag food insist that keeping them all in the dark is the best policy………………………………..

Of course my suggestions fall on stony ground and let’s face it wag food’s ground must be very stony – so we have no option but to wait and wait and wait. In fairness though, we must bear in mind that it must be a difficult job to put together a board to represent the food and drink industry! I was though told that over 40 people interviewed for this board. As one producer said last week, surely of those 40 people, there were a sufficient number whose faces ‘fitted’ with wag food, but seemingly not!!!

Whenever this board is elected – and when and if I’m told – I’ll let you know, but please don’t hold your breath!

 

 

19Dec

I’m still being asked what’s happening with the proposed Food & Drink Wales Industry Board. So here’s the story:

The interviews took place as the government promised, with the first meeting of the board scheduled for the 8th December. We understand that those interviewed are still waiting to be told if they’ve been successful, as the Welsh Government cancelled their first scheduled meeting.

Apparently The Minister is still considering the proposal for Board membership; there is still some optimism, not quite sure where apart from government circles, that the Board will be announced early in the New Year with the first meeting held during January.

Well how do you sum this up? From my side I find it rather pathetic. You have hard-working business people who have take the time and trouble to apply for a board post, have gone along for an interview, then scheduled the 8th December in their busy diary – just in case they were successful, but now have to wait for a yes or a no sometime in the New Year.

However that is not all that concerns me. I’m also apprehensive as to how fair a representation of the Welsh food and drinks industry this board will actually be. Micros have expressed their lack of interest in this board because they simply haven’t time to put themselves forward. Although we have no idea who went forward for an interview, I’m sure there are few, if any micro producers; they simply haven’t the time to leave their businesses. This means that the micro sector, once more will be ignored, which wag food is so good at doing. My fear is that the board will comprise of Quangos and big businesses that are all more than capable of fighting their own corner. If any food funding is available, they’ll be the guys one the front row with their begging bowls held out.

When more news comes through I’ll post an update, but meanwhile I can only hope that my fears are unfounded, but…………………

 

 
 

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  1. Foodie2

    March 3, 2015 at 6:33 pm

    ” What we have to do is provide targeted support to the different sectors to ensure that our food businesses no matter where it is in Wales or whatever food it produces knows it has a government backing it.”
    “this plan is not a high level strategy; it is completely focused on delivery.
    – Alun Davies, Natural Resources and Food Minister June 2014

    Know the Welsh Government are backing me??? I know they really could not care less, unless it is to chuck more red tape my way.
    As for being focused on delivery, it is too much to ask that they actually get their act together, go to Specsavers and start focusing?
    I suppose after being in Dubai in February, and now off to Tokyo, there is not much time to actually do something about the Welsh Food indentity (they actually use the True Taste logo abroad!) here in Wales, to help us small producers to sell. No – far too simple!
    Ireland is already ahead – it launched its food strategy four years ago.

     
  2. BOW

    March 4, 2015 at 9:32 am

    Foodie 2 is another on here that talks sense but we can’t expect wag to listen as they know best in their minds anyway.
    We all feel wag are not giving a toss about us it’s their favourite big boys the ones that get all the grants handed to them on a large platter
    they’ll be the ones on the board so they can further feather their large nests.
    Of course wag has to go to Dubai, Tokyo great holiday times for them and a cushy way of saying they are supporting Welsh food abroad ……the favourites will have gone to those places too.
    showing the true taste logo anywhere shows how out-of-touch these guys are. True Taste another waste of Welsh tax payers money.
    well done for saying this
    I agree as will many others.
    Producers views have never counted for anything with wag food unless they are grant funded by wag food
    that’s the difference.