Hello there! My name is Myrddin Davies and I’m a North Wales farmer and the ‘Face of Welsh Lamb’ – an ambassador for the brand. I’m passionate about Welsh Lamb and more than happy to praise its high quality, excellent flavour and wonderful heritage to anyone who’ll listen.
So let me tell you a bit about myself. I’m 29 and really looking forward to getting married to my fiancée, Elliw, next year. Our farm, Nant y Wrach Bach, which translates as “valley of the little witch”, lies in the parish of Pandy Tudur, south east of Conwy, North Wales.
We have 180 acres on which we keep 500 breeding sheep, up to 40 beef cattle, and 300 turkeys in the run-up to Christmas. Most of our sheep are Lleyn, a breed which originated from the Lleyn Peninsula in North West Wales. They’re a breed with strong maternal traits which we cross with pedigree Charollais, a meatier breed, to produce our prime lamb.
When I take over from my Father, Gwynfor, in the next few years I’ll be the fourth generation of my family who’ve worked this farm. That’s the kind of heritage and tradition that has helped Welsh Lamb achieve Protected Geographical Indication status from the European Union, which acknowledges these virtues.
We’re really proud of the traditional farming practices which basically haven’t changed much for centuries. Sure, we have a tractor and have adapted the farming system to the 21st century, but apart from that we’re sheep farming much the same way our ancestors did.
It’s the way of life that appeals to me. I love the fresh air and working with the seasons. Sheep farming is about grass, pure water, and letting nature take its course – it’s about as natural as you can get. Simple ingredients that produce a fantastic, high-quality product.
It’s hard work mind and definitely not your typical 9-5 job. But I think it’s more rewarding. And there’s always the challenge of trying to improve and produce better lamb.
But we don’t just produce food; we look after the whole environment. For example, we’re part of an agri-environment scheme that encourages farmers to restore old hedges and plant new ones. It’s our job to help protect the unique environment that’s sustained our way of life for centuries. You could say that sheep farming is essential to maintaining the stunning landscapes we have in Wales.
As the Face of Welsh Lamb my main remit is to talk to journalists and provide an insight into how lamb is produced by showing them round the farm. I also talk to people at shows and fairs about how we produce Welsh Lamb and explain what’s so special about it.
Occasionally, I also take part in cookery demonstrations and discuss the different cuts of meat available, so my experience working in a local butcher’s shop certainly comes in very handy!