Farmers vote to shape the future

AHDB has received overwhelmingly positive feedback from levy payers in the Shape the Future votes.

Paul Flanagan, AHDB Dairy strategy director
Paul Flanagan, AHDB Dairy strategy director

During April and May, they asked levy payers who registered for ‘Shape the Future’ if they agreed with their proposed priorities by ranking them in terms of importance from one to five, where one is low and five is high. They were then asked to rank the work we should do to support those areas.

With turnout at 35 per cent or 1,212 votes from 3,420 registered dairy levy payers, the scores for the three proposed priorities were:

– Building positive reputation for dairy farming and driving demand at home and overseas received with an average score of 4.5 from the dairy levy payers

– Supporting dairy farmers to operate more profitably scored of 4.1

– Help farmers prepare for the future by driving animal health and welfare and environmental standards scored 3.8

AHDB also asked levy payers to ratify new and second term sector council members, who were all appointed after receiving more than 50 per cent of the votes. These include: Liz Haines, Peter Rees, Ian Harvey, Gemma Smale-Rowland, Mike King, Joe Towers and Rob Nancekivell.

Throughout June, AHDB sector council members will meet to make funding decisions for the next five years of work delivered for levy payers, based on the feedback from the vote.

They’re arranging an open meeting in the autumn, and in the meantime encourage levy payers to contact their Knowledge Exchange team, senior team members, board or sector councils with your thoughts.

Further detail can be found at

Paul Flanagan is AHDB Dairy strategy director

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