The Farmers’ Union of Wales has long been involved in forging strong economic connections with China and has welcomed Managing Director of Goodwell China Marketing Services Co Ltd, Mr Daniel Zhou, to its pavilion in order to thank him for supporting the Welsh dairy industry. The Farmers’ Union of Wales also gave recognition for Daioni in the dairy industry.
Both Mr Zhou, who is visiting Wales, and Laurence Harris of Ffosyficer farm – the heart of the Daioni Organic business, were welcomed by FUW Deputy President Brian Thomas, who said: “I would first of all like to welcome Mr Zhou wholeheartedly to Wales – and what a perfect time to visit us.
“We are always honoured to meet our overseas trading partners and have done so for many years. It was during the 2010 lunch at the House of Lords that we welcomed Mr Zhou Xiaoming, Minister Counsellor of Economic and Commercial Office of the Embassy of the People’s Republic of China and it was at the invitation of the FUW that he attended the 2010 Royal Welsh Show.
“Supporting our dairy industry and forging strong links for our export markets is at the forefront of everyone’s mind, especially in light of our decision to exit the European Union. Rural Wales needs to be recognised for the part that it can play in building a vibrant Wales with a thriving rural economic powerhouse and businesses like Daioni Organic are a perfect example of just that.
“We must remember that such trade partnerships are only possible because of excellent people like Laurence Harris of Daioni Organic, who produce such wonderful dairy products that we can be proud to export across the world.
“In order to honour and thank our guest Mr Zhou for supporting our excellent and efficient dairy sector, I would today like to present him with the Farmers’ Union of Wales gold medal in recognition of his services to the Welsh dairy industry.”
Well known north Pembrokeshire organic dairy farmer Laurence Harris, who joined the meeting at the FUW pavilion, has taken Daioni Organic – meaning “goodness” – from strength to strength.
The brand’s humble beginnings began with a 150-acre farm in Pembrokeshire, Wales. Since taking over Ffosyficer farm – still the heart of the Daioni business – from his father in 1970, Laurence expanded the family farm to well over 3,000 acres of fertile pasture.
“We initially set up the business with a single tanker and a couple of lorries and sent our milk to north Wales to be processed and packaged and in 2003 we launched Daioni, the first range of flavoured organic milk drinks in Britain,” added Mr Harris.
From the initial interest shown by local schools to put the product in their vending machines as an alternative to fizzy, sugary drinks, the business has flourished.
Today the range of products has grown to include organic fresh milk and cream, organic UHT/longlife milk, and flavoured milk.
In 2008 Daioni flavoured milk was exported overseas for the first time and is now stocked in outlets around the world as well as in small retailers and major supermarkets across the UK.
In addition, in 2012 Daioni Organic became the first British dairy company to gain organic certification in mainland China and in 2014 they opened their Hong Kong office to focus on Asia Pacific sales. Today exports account for over 25 percent of the business turnover.
Around twenty local people are employed by the farming business which today is solely owned by the Harris family and continues to go from strength to strength.
“We pride ourselves on the quality of our organic milk, from home-grown cows that freely roam the grassy climbs of West Wales. Through the combination of happy cows, fertile soils and abundant grass, we have found the winning formula for delicious, flavoursome and quality milk,” said Mr Harris.
For more information about Daioni visit: www.daioni.co.uk