Care boxes packed with goodies have been sent to hard-working farmers across North and Mid Wales to thank them for keeping the country fed and nourished throughout the pandemic crisis.
More than 100 St David’s Day gifts have been sent out by kind-hearted South Caernarfon Creameries (SCC) based in Chwilog in Gwynedd as a surprise gesture to recognise the farming community’s vital role.
Each box included a Beanie hat, a container of hand sanitiser, a face mask, a travel mug, an umbrella, top grade Dragon cheese, a footpath sign to remind passing walkers to thank their local farmers for all they do, a selection of delicious recipes, and a postcard inscribed with a message of gratitude.
Managers at SCC wanted to pay a special tribute to the dedication of their farmer members who they consider are the pride of Wales for having continued to churn out quality dairy products non-stop despite the unprecedented challenges of the last 12 months.
SCC Sales and Marketing Co-ordinator Megi Williams said she and her team are hugely proud to be able to deliver a token of gratitude to the farmers who have worked all hours to keep the SCC dairy production line rolling.
She said: “St David’s Day is the most important celebratory day of the calendar in Wales and we always try to mark it with a special event.
“Last year we sent out goodie packs including our famous Dragon-brand cheeses to an array of social media influencers and celebrities. We’re pleased to say it generated some really positive feedback from them.
“But this year, given all the challenges and difficult circumstances our indefatigable farmers have faced, we wanted to do something much closer to home.
“When it came to brainstorming ideas, we were in no doubt that the most important thank you should go to all our farmer members who have worked night and day to keep the milk flowing and the creameries running.
“These are our key workers for sure, people who have gone above and beyond to look after their livestock and the ongoing welfare of their customers.
“Farmers have literally kept this country fed and nourished, they have maintained vital supplies to keep our supermarkets and local shops stocked with essentials, and in very many cases they have put the welfare of others before themselves.
“They are at the core of everything we do here at SCC and that’s the reason why we wanted to send a surprise thank you box to each and every one of them.”
SCC is the leading farmer owned dairy co-operative in Wales and has 137 farmer members across North and Mid-Wales.
Their top-class dairy herds have maintained milk supplies as usual over the last year, including that used to produce SCC’s flagship Welsh cheese and butter brands, such as the famous Dragon brand..
Megi said: “The co-operative has always had the local community at its heart. It is the locality and its people that make up our suppliers, our customers, in many cases our families, neighbours and our friends.
“When the pandemic hit we knew that no matter what, for the benefit of this community, we had to keep supplies on stream and all our farmers really stepped up to the plate to achieve that. They did not hesitate for a minute. Throughout each of the lockdowns and the health scares we have all faced they have worked selflessly as normal, they have carried on tirelessly.”
“Here at SCC we could not be prouder of the farmer members and staff who have demonstrated such outstanding commitment and risen above these enormous challenges.
“We want them to know we consider them part of our greater family and we appreciate everything that each co-operative member has done to keep our entire operation going.”
She said the gift boxes were a way of letting the famers know that their work had not gone unnoticed.
She said: “By comparison to the effort our famers have put in, these gift boxes are but a small token of thanks, but they are given from the heart.”
“We didn’t tell the farmers because we wanted to maintain the surprise factor, but we dispatched them on Friday with the idea that they should have all have received the gift in time for St David’s Day on the Monday.
“It is, of course, a very important day in Wales and one which generates a real sense of national pride. We believe that makes it an appropriate day to thank the men and women farmers who can truly be described as the pride of Wales.”
SCC also organised a number of promotional offers in local shops and supermarkets to mark the patron saint of Wales’s day, and it celebrated further by broadcasting an advertisement on S4C and Sky television.