New president of Royal Jersey Agricultural & Horticultural Society says he is optimistic for industry’s future

Paul Houze, new President of the RJA & HS Picture: JON GUEGAN. (38134310)

THE future of the Jersey herd is bright, according to the newly-elected president of the Royal Jersey Agricultural & Horticultural Society.

Dairy farmer Paul Houzé said the industry was “better placed now than it has been for many a long year”.

He added that they were now getting “much more generous support” from government, “which has finally realised the importance of having agriculture in the Island”.

“The industry now receives around £6.7m of States support per annum, which is a big increase. It’s going to make a very significant difference, and already we are seeing a lot of farms reinvesting, which I think is really encouraging,” he said.

Mr Houzé added: “I think it has been the most positive developments in the industry for years. It’s been a game changer.”

Another reason for optimism, he said, was that since 2008 the Island dairy industry had been able to source international pedigree genetics. Mr Houzé explained: “I don’t think the movement of genetics is going to be one-way. I can see us exporting as well as importing.

“We’ve now got to a stage where the standard of the cows in Jersey is matching most other places.”

Mr Houzé was elected as the new president of the society at the recent annual general meeting. There were no other candidates. His name was proposed by Andrew Le Gallais and seconded by Stephen Le Feuvre.

The outgoing president, Rob Perchard, has served seven years: two three-year terms, plus an extra year because of the Covid pandemic.

Mr Le Feuvre was re-elected treasurer of the agriculture section and Paulette de la Haye was elected a council member.

New members of the agricultural committee are Laurence Agnès and Charlie Le Boutillier; Kevin Roberts joins the horticultural committee.

Honorary life membership was given to Dr David Pope and Annie Pope.

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