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FARMERS COMBINE

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FARMERS COMBINE NEW INDUSTRY FOR LLANDILO. CHEESE FACTORY OPENED BY LORD SHAiFTESB URY. Saturday last marked another step forward to wards the establishment of complete agricultural co- operation in Carmarthenshire. The seeds of co- operation were sown in the county by Mr. A Biugstocke, Blaenpant, who watched their germina- tion, carefully tended the young p'ants, which to- day have taken strong root, and are spreading their branches. One of the branches is the Carmarthen- shire Dairy Farmers' Association, which under the skillful guidance of the secretary (Mr. W. J. Thomas, Glantowy, Llanarthney, and an enterprising com- mittee, has developed rapidly. As an association of milk vendors they were faced with the difficulty of the disposal of their superfluous product, especially in siJmmer months, and this led to the project of a cheese factory. Suitable premises were discovered in the disused butter factory at Ffairfaoh, near Llan dilo, and it was decided to put the movement into practical form. Mr. and Mrs. Gwynne-Hughes, Tregeyb, the owners of the premises, greatly in terested themselves in the factory and did much to help it on as did also Lord Dynevor. Saturday saw the realization of the project, and there was a very large attendance at the opening of the cheese fao- tory by the Earl of Shaftesbury, K.P., K.C.V.O. In honour of the auspicious occasion the approach to the premises bore quite a festive appearance. Flags and bannerettes floated gaily in the breere, whilst a long string of up-to-date motor-cars testified to the presence of a large number of representatives of county families. Amongst those present were noticed:âLord and Lady Dynevor, The Castle; Lieut.-General Sir James Hills-Johnes, V.C., G.C.B., Dolaucothi; Sir Stafford Howard, Llanelly; Col. and Mrs. Gwynne-Hughes, Glaneothy; Mr. and Mrs. J. W. Gwynne-Hughes, Tregeyb; Mr. and Mrs. H. E. E. Philipps, Tregeyb; Mr. H. Seymour Allen, Cres- selly; Mr. Allen Stepney Gulstohe, Derwydd; Mr. Geo. Stepney Gulston, Court Henry; Mr. Mervyn Peel, Danyrallt; Miss Peel, Mr. Evan Jones, Manor- avon; Mr. W. L. G. Morris, Ystradwrallt; Alder. man W. N. Jones. Dyffryn; Alderman C. P. Lewis, Llandovery; Col. Morris, Brynffin; CoL Lloyd-Har- ries, Llwyndewi; Mr. and Mrs. Delme Davies-Evans, Penylan; Rev. W. Davies, The Walk; Mr. R. Ship ley Lewis. Llandilo; to. DESCRIPTION AND HISTORY OF THE BUILDING, The factory, which is a. spacious one, is within 80 yards of Ffairfach Station (G.W.R.), and about 200 yards from Llandilo Bridge Railway Station L. and N.W.R. The building was constructed some 12 years ago as a butter factory, but was never used for that purpose. It is admirably adapted for its present purpose. In the basement are a number of rooms fitted up for the requirements of the factory, such as the engine and boiler room, the creamery and the press room. In the upper part of the build- ing are two large rooms for storing purposes, and in one of these the opening ceremony took place. Operations commenced on April 1st. At present only 200 gallons of milk a day are being dealt with, but :t is anticipated that in a fortnight that quantity will be doubled. The factory is capable of dealing with 1,000 gallons. The boiler is used for warming the milk in the vats as wall as for supplying warm water. An oil engine drives the curd mill and the separator. So convinced are the promoters of its success that mechanical extensions are to be made. All the machinery, including engine, boilers, &c., was supplied by Mr. T. M. Williams, ironmonger, Llandilo. THE FUNCTION. Lord Dynevor presided over the gathering. He said it gave him great pleasure to do so. The establishment of the factory on co-operative lines meant that the farmers were going to work together and pull together. They had a good deal of co-opera- tion in Llandilo already by purchasing articles from the Co-operative stores in the New-road. But that was not the only side of co-operation. Co-operation could also be applied to reducing the cost of pro- duction as well as to getting better markets. For instanoe if it cost now la. to produce an article which could be sold for lB. 4d., and if by co-operation the cost of production could be reduced to 8d., they would be making a profit on it of 8d. instead of 4d. Thereby they would be able to spend more money in shopping, would be able to pay better wages to those whom they employed, and the whole com- munity would gain by co-operation. Then again his lordship went on to explain they would get cheaper railway freights by having their goods sent away in bulks neatly and securely packed in the smallest possible dimensions. They lived in a time of great competition, and nobody knew it bet-er than the farmer. Butter could be brought from Australia over thousands of miles of ocean at a cost of le-s than a jd. per lb. This country imported over seven million pounds worth of cheese every year. Why should not their own farmers make some of that cheese and get some of that profit. It could be done, and was going to be done (applause). Their big industrial centres wanted a regular supply of articles of a uniform character, and that was what this factory was going to do. By means of that factory they would be able to get away from glutted markets (renewed applause). The co-operation mo *e- ment was first of all started by Sir Horace Plunkett in Ireland. England and Wales followed suit. By means of this factory they would be able to send away their cheese to places where there was a t'o mand for it. As showing what could bo done by intelligent co-operation, Lord Dynevor mentioned the case of a man in England who grew Vegetable marrows. The local markets were so glutted that he was unable to get a price for them, and the result was that he had to plough them into the land as manure. At that very time vegetable marrows were selling in London at 3d. and 4d. apiece. Now if there had .been a co-operative society in the dis- trict that would not have occurred for ho could by its aid have been brought in touch with London buyers. Mr. H. Jones-Daries, Glvneiddan, said that 180 farmers had already taken up B5 shares in the society, of which JB1 had been called up. SPEECH BY LORD SHAFTESBURY. Lord Shaftesbury, who received a very hearty re- ception, in declaring the factory open, said that unless they oombined they would not receive the killest advantage from their products. The fire in regard to agricultural co-operation had been lit, and was smouldering throughout the country in different parts of which it was bursting out into flame day by day. The middle man had been at the toll of custom for a long time, and had been taking a. heavy toll. He did not blame him, but was there any reason why the farmer should not get the middleman's profit for himself? Great things had been done in Ireland. Sir Horace Plunkett was quick to see the wonderful developments that had taken place in Europe, and he thought that Ireland was exactly the country where- in to apply the principle of agricultural oo-operation. He (the speaker) had had great cixpprlence of Irish affairs, and could say without hesitation that where- ever one went one saw the great change that had taken place in the prosperity and welfare of the farming community in Ireland, due mainly to the efforts made by the Board of Agriculture, and to Sir Horace Plunkett, who taught the farmer how to market his produce on co-operative lines. In Europe the co-operative movement was colossal, but the 400 or 500 societies already established in England and Wales showed that they had firmly established the principles. He was delighted to see how readily lhe Welsh people had embraced the movement. Ten years ago about a dozen people who were the only ones to turn up at a meeting held in a corner of a back street at Carmarthen decided to enrol them- selves as the Carmarthen Farm-er>" Co-operative Society and to-day that society numbered 1.300 mem- bers, and had a turnover of nearly £ 100,000 a year. In Wales the gospel of co-operation had fallen on willing ears. The movement had a social as well as an economic value, It was a little of the spirit of each for all and all for each" that they badly wanted in the United Kingdom. During his speech Earl Shaftesbury quoted figures to show the immense strides made by the co-operative movement in Europe. The number of co-operative agricultural societies in Germany was 26,000, Russia 11,192, Aus- tria 10,515, Italy 8,630, France between seven and eight thousand, Switzerland between five and six thousand, Hungary between five and six thousand, whilst in Denmark the system of co-operation was practically complete. Sir Stafford Howard proposing a vote of thanks to Lord Shaftesbury thanked those who had invited him to that interesting ceremony. He had been slightly familiar with this part of the country for a good many years, but lately he had become far more interested in this country, as many of them were aware. He assured them that he should be very happy of whatever little service he could to this co-operative movement in which he had been interested for a great number of years. He went on to say that in spite of the enormous increase of the industries of the country, agriculture had re- mained almost stationary. The agricultural output of the country was something like 15C millions a year. Why should it not be more in view of their indus- tries? They were bound to feed the people in the cheapest possible way. About 11 years ago a deputa- tion from the three counties of'West Wales went to Lreland to see what Sir Horace Plunkett had done there, and the result was that every county in Wales except Radnor had some organization, and the best of them all was Carmarthenshire (loud applause). There were now six thousand members of fanners' co-operative societies in Wales, and the turnover last year was over a quarter of a million. Mr. Seymour Allen and Mr. Gwynne-Hughes sup- ported, and the motion was carried amid loud ap- plause). Lieut.-General Sir James Hills-Johnes, proposing a vote of thanks to Lord Dynevor said that the more he knew his lordship the higher he rose in his esti- mation. He took part in all good works in this county and agriculture especially. There was no one they could rely on with more certainty in this special work, and it was not a matter for surprise that he took a keen interest in the welfare of the farmer as he (Sir James) was sure all gentlemen in Wales did. With the vote he coupled the name of Lady Dynevor, because she thoroughly supported Lord Dynevor in everything he did. Mr. Mervyn Peel, Danyrallt, seconding, said ne had always endeavoured to show his interest in the land by fostering and helping the interest of ile tenant farmer. They should increase the food pro- duction in their own country. They had been too much dependent on foreign food supplies: The more food they could produce by means of co-operative societies in the county the better. He recalled the time some 20 or 30 years ago when the hills were ploughed up to the top. Many of them had now gone out of cultivation. They should get back to the former state of affairs. They were that day inaugurating a further step in the right direction, because by means of that factory they would be able to turn all the surplus milk which the farmer had in the summer into cheese (applause). The motion was carried. Lord Dynevor suitably responded and the proceed- ings ended. VISIT TO THE STORES. On his way to Llandilo the Earl of Shaftesbury called at the Carmarthen Farmers' Co-operative Stores, and his lordship said, judging from what he had seen as he motored through West Wales, he would imagine that it was a good milk-produoing oountry. LLANDOVERY AND DISTRICT. On Saturday, the 5th inst., the above society was honoured by a visit from the Earl of Shaftesbury, K.P. K.C.V.O., chairman of the Governors of the Agricultural Organisation Society. His lordship, accompanied by Sir Stafford Howard, Mr Phillips, Tregeyb, and others, was received at the head- quarters of the society by the Rev. David Davies, vicar of Cilycwm, chairman of the executive com- mittee. Other members of the committee present being Mr. James Marscond, Mr. Jones, Little Hall; Mr. Peters, Penlan, and Mr. Clement, Llwynjack. The Chairman having given a brief outline of the history of the movement, in the district, distributed copies of the balance-sheet for last year among the distinguished visitors. Lord Shaftesbury and Sir Stafford Howard expressed their great delight vt finding the spirit of co-operation so much alive in the district, and congratulated the chairman and the committee on the healthy state of the society. They urged the farmers of the district to cling together and cultivate that unity which was so very much needed amongst agriculturalists. The Earl of Shaftesbury also alluded to the duty of the farmers who had not already joined the society, coming into line, as the future depends very largely on the suc- cess of the oo-operative movement. The visit of such a distinguished party will give a help to the movement in the district. The co-operative move- ment, thanks; to the efforts of the Vicar of Cilycwm, is firmly fixed in the district. The energetic secre- tary, Mr. Thomas Jones, Llwynmeredith, was un- avoidab'y absent owing to an important engagement.

- -dib. IALLTWALIS.

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