There will be four candidates in the running for two deputy president positions at the Ulster Farmers’ Union (UFU) AGM, due to take place at the end of April 2024.

With current UFU president David Brown stepping down after his two-year term leading the organisation, he will be replaced by William Irvine, who will have served four years as deputy president.

That leaves the other deputy president, Garvagh farmer John McLenaghan, seeking re-election from UFU council members to serve for a second two-year term as deputy president.

McLenaghan is expected to win that vote, effectively leaving three new candidates in the running for the second deputy president position.

The new candidates are Glenn Cuddy, Pat McKay and John McCallister. Cuddy, who stood for election in 2021, farms beef, sheep and pigs outside Donaghmore in Co Tyrone, and is a past chair of the UFU pork and bacon committee.

McKay farms beef cattle outside Warrenpoint and is the current chair of the UFU beef and lamb committee.

McCallister, who runs a dairy farm outside Rathfriland, is a former MLA for south Down and former deputy leader of the Ulster Unionist Party. Having lost his Stormont seat in 2016, the following year he took up a position managing the Young Farmers’ Clubs of Ulster (YFCU) land mobility programme. McCallister held that role until the programme concluded at the end of August 2023.

He is also a former president of the YFCU.

UFU council members will have the opportunity to hear from the candidates at hustings events due to take place in each county, starting in February.

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