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Agricultural Jlttm .

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Agricultural Jlttm AGRICULTURAL CO-OPERATION IN WALES. THE committee appointed at a meeting held at Welshpool on the 6th January, and con- sisting of Mr. A. C. Humphreys-Owen, M.P., Mr. Edward Davies (directors of the Cam- brian Railways), Mr. J. Marshall Dugdale (member of the Council of the Royal Agri- cultural Society of England, and High She- riff of Montgomeryshire), Colonel Hughes (agent to Sir Watkin Wynn), Mr. W. Forres- ter Addie (Mayor of Welshpool and agent to the Earl of Powis), Professor Parry (Aber- ystwyth College), Mr. C. Venables Llewelyn (Newbridge on Wye), Mr. S. M. Bligh, and Mr. C. S. Denniss (general manager of the Cambrian Railways), have met at Plasdi- nam, and agreed on the following interim report:— 1. In compliance with the order of refer- ence, the committee have considered the possibility of applying in practice the prin- ciple of agricultural co-operation, especially in dairying. On the present occasion they have dealt only with dairying. 2. They have received much valuable in- formation (including copies of reports and accounts of several creameries now in opera- tion in Ireland) from the chairman (the Hon. Horace Plunkett, M.P) and the secretary (Mr. R. A. Anderson, of the Irish Agricul- tural Organisation Society), to whom they desire to express their thanks. 3. They find that the Irish dairy societies, or creameries, are successfully carried on by farmers, who find the necessary capital, on the basis of taking Rl share for each cow whose milk is sent to the creamery, the management being entirely in the hands of the shareholders. It is found that the quan- tity of butter produced is somewhat under 6! oz. per gallon of milk, and that the aver- age price obtained for the butter at the creamery is a fraction over lOd. per lb. It thus requires nearly three gallons of milk to produce lib. of butter, and the price; therefore, v.hich the creamery can afford to pay is about 3jd. per gallon, or less than Id. 2 per quart; but in addition to this, they would return the skim-milk, which is worth lid. per gallon for rearing calves or pigs, thus making the total value of the milk 4jd. 2 or 5d. per gallon, and getting the manure from the animals fed with skim-milk, for use on the farm, as against the amount re ceived for selling the milk entirely off the farm. The committee have no reason to think that Welsh milk would, on the aver- age, give a larger quantity of butter per gallon, and they doubt whether the farmers of the district served by the Cambrian Rail- ways would be content to sell their milk all the year round at the above-mentioned price, or even a little over. 4. If, however, this price were thought not unsatisfactory by the majority of farmers, the next step should be taken to ascertain for any locality whether there are within easy range of a convenient centre a suffici- cient number of dairy cows whose owner would undertake to join in forming an asso- ciation for providing the buildings and plad for a factory. From 500 to 1,000 cows is a number which has been found by Irish ex- perience to give the best results. As the intention of the present report is to convey general information, it is not thought neces- sary to enter into details as to methods of forming and managing an association until the generai question has received more con- sideration from the public. 5. An alternative to the creamery system, under which the milk is brought as raw ma- terial to the manufacturing centre, is that of collecting and grading and marketing the farmers' own butter. This may be carried on in fwolldifferent ways. By the fyrst, the butter is churned and made up as at pre- sent at the farmhouse, and the work of the central institution is limited to receiving, classifying, and disposing of it. The success of this method depends entirely on the skill and care of the individual farmer or dairy- maid. It is indispensable that the butter should be of good quality, and made up in shapes best fitted for packing and travelling and of uniform weight, appearance, colour, and size. If these conditions are fulfilled, the manager who does the selling will, if a sufficient number of competent members join, be able to meet the modern demand for large quantities of even quality thr ugh- out. 6. By the second method, the churning only is done at the farmhouse. The butter is taken out of the churn as soon as the granular stage is reached-i.e., before it gathers into a lump, and is then carried to the central dairy, where it is dried in the delaiteuse (the centrifugal drier), weighed, and then worked up for the market. 7. In each of these two cases the farmer receives the price of his butter, less the amount of expenses of working and manage- ment, 8. The committee will meet again shortly. They will regard it as a favour if any persons interested in the subject, whether members of the conference or not, will send to Mr. Denniss, at the company's office at Oswestry, any criticism or suggestions which may occur to them for consideration at the next meeting of the committee.

EXCITING EXPERIENCE AT .LLANBERIS…

,ST. ASAPH.-

. BOARD OF G^TARDI A.NS.

--------RURAL DISTRICT COUNCIL.

MONEY-LENDING AMONG WELSH…

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