The popular UFU annual dinner and dance attracted a good turnout at the Killyhevlin Hotel, Enniskillen on Friday evening.

For the guest speaker, Mr. David Brown, UFU President, it was a homecoming as he farms near Florencecourt. During the 2015-1016 year, David had been County Chairman welcoming guests.

On Friday evening, David, accompanied by his wife, Mary, reviewed some of the changes taking place in agriculture at present.

He said everyone enjoyed good food but perhaps not enough credit was given to farmers and growers for producing it.

He reminded farmers of the many challenges facing them including the war in Ukraine.

He also referred to the milestone figure of the world population during the past week when it reached eight billion people. He said just after the Second World War, the global population stood at 2.3 billion and during that time since, farmers around the world had fed all those people.

As he has travelled throughout the British Isles and Europe in his first six months as UFU President, he has realised that some countries have challenges greater than here. For example 44 per cent of Europe had been severely impacted by droughts this year.

He said a real challenge is food security which is being recognised in Europe but perhaps not as high on the agenda at Westminster despite the fact the United Kingdom was only 60 per cent self sufficient.

He also highlighted the importance of some basic commodities for farmers. For example two out of five people are alive today because of the use of chemical fertilisers on crops yet there are those who do not think it is needed.

He said he had every confidence that farmers will continue to rise to the challenge of feeding the increasing world's population estimated to reach 10 billion people by 2050 but producing it more sustainably than now.

He said farmers should not have any fears of efficient farming.

The guests were introduced by the Fermanagh County Chairman, Mr. Andrew Gordon. These included the Chairs of each of the counties.

Grace was said before the meal by the Fermanagh UFU Office Manager, Mrs. Margaret Maguire and afterwards the carvery dinner, a draw and auction took place with Mr. Derek Thornton as auctioneers. Local businesses had donated vouchers and goods. Among some of the prizes for the auction were loads of drainage stones, animals health products, and other agricultural items. All the money raised was gong to Marie Curie, the chosen charity of David Brown.