The NFU team has been bolstered, after welcoming a new recruit to its ranks who will work to benefit Herefordshire farmers and growers.
A seventh generation farmer, Alicia Parker, whose family farm near Bromyard, joined the regional team on 23 May as Herefordshire NFU adviser.
She takes over the post after Clare Greener left the NFU in March to set up her own cut flower business.
In the role, Ali will also take charge of the regional horticulture and potatoes board and regional tenant farmers’ group.
She said: “I’m absolutely delighted to join the team as Herefordshire county adviser.
“As someone who has grown up on a poultry and arable family farm in Herefordshire and spent two years of my early career on the NFU graduate scheme, I am aware of the immense pressure farmers are under to operate successful businesses.
“I look forward to helping members and their businesses move forward and am really excited to be working within my home region.”
Ali has a degree in consumer behaviour and marketing and worked for an agricultural PR company across a variety of global sector businesses.
“Having worked in public relations, I know the value and importance of good communication, particularly for an industry that is often misrepresented,” she said.
“At this time, it is vital that we continue to make sure that people understand farming principles and the challenges we face as food producers.
“As well as lobbying local authorities and public bodies, I also think this role is fundamental to reach out to people, particularly the younger generation, so that they can develop a better understanding of Herefordshire agriculture and horticulture.”
At home Ali remains involved with the family poultry business, which also has arable and sheep sector interests and is an active member of Herefordshire Young Farmers.
“As we experience such a pivotal time in UK agriculture, I’m looking forward to working with key stakeholders to help Herefordshire farms go from strength to strength.
“Over the next few months, I hope to meet members across the county and look forward to working with NFU members from the grass roots up,” she added.
NFU Midlands network manager Richard Butler welcomed Ali to the team and said she would bring strong qualities and add value to membership.
He said: “I am delighted Ali has joined the NFU team; she has a strong farming background and also benefits from two years’ experience on the NFU graduate scheme.
“I believe Ali will be a great asset to the NFU in Herefordshire – working in partnership with our group secretaries, members and key stakeholders – to ensure the voice of the NFU and the impact of union activities are fully heard and seen across the county.”
Members can contact Ali by email firstname.lastname@example.org to or call her on 01952 400500.