Farming union elects its first ever female president

Minette Batters, the NFU's first female president. Pictured at Driffield Show by Simon Hulme.
Minette Batters, the NFU's first female president. Pictured at Driffield Show by Simon Hulme.
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Minette Batters has been elected as the new president of the National Farmers’ Union in a landmark election for the industry group.

The appointment of Ms Batters is the first time in the NFU’s 110-year history as a membership group for farmers and growers in England and Wales that a woman has been named as its most senior office holder.

Minette Batters farms in Wiltshire.

Minette Batters farms in Wiltshire.

The election was held at the end of the NFU’s two-day annual conference in Birmingham this afternoon.

Wiltshire-based farmer Ms Batters steps up from her role as deputy president to succeed Welsh farmer Meurig Raymond who has stepped down from the presidency after serving as a national office holder for 14 years.

Ms Batters grew up living and working on-farm and secured a long-term Farm Business Tenancy of her own in 1998.

She built the business up from nothing to over 300 head of stock, with a herd of pedigree Hereford cattle running alongside a herd of 100 Simmental cross suckler cows and she specialises in selling premium store cattle.

She runs a diversified, mixed farming business that includes horse livery, a wedding and corporate events venue, and a catering business specialising in home grown produce, and now employs two full time and up to 20 part time staff.

She co-founded the campaigning initiatives ‘Ladies in Beef’ and the ‘Great British Beef Week’ and has served as an NFU county chairman, Wiltshire’s Council delegate and as regional board chairman for the South West.

The NFU’s other senior office holder positions have been filled by Essex-based farmer Guy Smith, who has been elected as deputy president, and Hertfordshire and Kent farmer Stuart Roberts in the role of vice president.