National Federation of Young Farmers' Clubs

Fun, Learning, and Achievement

11 March 2013

Herefordshire YFC member Becca Watkins visited the Houses of Parliament this month to speak with Farming Minister David Heath after winning an online competition.

Becca, who has also been a member of the NFYFC Youth Forum, won the unique chance to meet the Minister of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, simply by tweeting him.

Young people were invited to take part in Defra’s online #meetfm competition, where they were asked to share their thoughts on the key barriers to their farming future. Becca, who is studying Biology at Oxford University, was chosen as one of the five winners after tweeting:

"Key barrier is poor communication; future farmers must be innovative with science and engage with a more discerning public"

And this was an issue Becca was keen to raise with the Minister;

“I want to stress the importance of strong communication links, both between scientific research and everyday farming practices, as well as between farmers and consumers, making them better educated and more discerning.”

Becca is no stranger to speaking out about agriculture, after representing NFYFC at this year’s Young Advocates for Agriculture National Debating Competition, and during the meeting she raised the need for a ‘re-branding’ of the agricultural industry.

After the meeting Becca said;

“It was a really brilliant opportunity and I think everyone felt lucky to be able to speak to David Heath, especially when he was so keen to hear our views. We really worked through ideas instead of just presenting them.”

She then tweeted; ‘fantastic meeting David Heath and very impressed by awareness of need for change and enthusiasm for views of #nextgen”


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