NEW president of the Hereford Cattle Society for 2019, is Northern Ireland breeder, Des Kelly from Ballygawley, Co Tyrone, who has taken over from Jonathan Moorhouse, following a busy year.

Mr Kelly, who is also recognised for founding CavanaghKelly which is now one of the largest independent accountancy and business consultancy groups in the province, comes from a well-known farming family and owns the Mullin herd of pedigree Herefords established in 2003.

Particularly focussed on the commercial attributes of the breed and on the potential to develop it further through supply chain engagement, he regularly hosts open farm events and visits from the red meat processors Dunbia. He has been successful in building relationships and promoting the Hereford brand.

“My outlook has always been commercial, and the importance of ensuring the breed can hold its place in an ever crowded market," said Mr Kelly.

"I endeavour to sell breeding stock off farm, and what doesn’t make it for breeding goes to the Co-op’s retail Hereford scheme through Dunbia. This particular scheme has proven very successful, but I have no doubt that more will be required so that all of our new breeders share in this type of scheme.

“The breed has come on leaps and bounds since I first became a member. We have many more new members, registered pedigree calves and an increasing presence within the branded retail beef schemes. Hereford beef can now be found on many menus in some of the top restaurants throughout the UK," added Mr Kelly.

Mark Roberts of the Bromley herd, based at Hoarwithy, Herefordshire was elected vice-president for 2019.