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Tuathanachas Alba


Combine Harvesters Telehandlers Turriff Show Perth Show Cooking with Game with Wendy Barrie Our Farm Shop Auchentullich Farm Shop Interview Fiona Sloan

World Farming Isle of Man In Focus MiAlgae Beatha an Eilean Life on the Islands Exotic Farming North Ronaldsay Sheep Country Woman Linn Anita-Larsen

Farming Travel The Scottish Borders

Book Serialisation Part 4: Walking with Cattle plus Scottish Country Life s SWI s Flavour of Scotland including our regular news sections and columns


august 2018

Scotland’s national farming & rural lifestyle magazine




Turriff Show Combine Harvesters Telehandlers Perth Show




With Wendy Barrie


Auchentullich Farm Shop


Fiona Sloan


The Isle of Man

Hooked on hockey


Linn Anita-Larsen


With Linda Mellor



Part 4: Walking with Cattle



North Ronaldsay Sheep


New distillery news


The Scottish Borders





MAIN FEATURES 21 24 34 42

august 2018

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Arable Potatoes

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EU News Environment People Livestock Pigs Dairy Sheep Science & Technology Forestry Estate Horses Machinery Finance Lifestyle Cars

COLUMNS 6 7 11 13 15 17 29 32 49 51 62 64

Editor’s bit In my view R.S.A.B.I. Hutton Institute Crofting Farmers Markets Scottish Government Farming for the Climate Quality Meat Scotland The Vet NFU Scotland N.S.A. Scotland

92 69 70 71 90 93 96 98 98

Conservation Matters Scottish Land & Estates Equine Angle The Money Man Southern Belle Rural Style People on the Move Book Review


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arable editor's bit Time for a revolution? Every summer, well what passes for summer in Scotland, Agricultural Shows take place every weekend throughout the country. These are great social occasions of course, but they should also act as a platform to promote that farming is all about food. We have a huge problem with obesity in this country, and the main culprit is processed food. In the 60 and 70’s we grew up on home cooked food. Proper food, not factory processed and full of chemicals and fake cheese! In my secondary school of around 800 pupils, I only knew of two overweight kids, today they would almost be in the majority. Being ‘fat’ is now being pushed by some in the ‘online trendy media’ as somehow something to be proud of! This is dangerous rubbish. Our Government, be it Scottish or UK, should be acting to support our farmers and our produce to combat the processed muck that often passes for food these days. And at all these Farm Shows up and down the nation, we must use them as Food Shows too! Get out your wares folks, and show the people what real food looks and tastes like. There needs to be a ‘food revolution’ and farmers should be leading the fight.

Slàinte, Athole.


Aldi buys over 80 tonnes of strawberries from Scottish growers ALDI has bought over 80 tonnes of Scottish strawberries to support growers facing a glut due to the later-than-usual start to the season. The supermarket will sell larger punnets at a marketleading £2.95 per kg across

its stores in Scotland and in selected stores in England and Wales. This will be alongside ALDI’s existing punnet sold nationwide (£1.39/400g). The additional order has helped relieve the pressure on growers facing a surplus of

stock, as well as preventing unnecessary food waste. This also follows the agreement ALDI made earlier this month to purchase 700,000 potatoes from a UK supplier that was left with a glut following a bumper crop.

Clubroot is an increasing problem affecting oilseed rape crops well beyond traditional hotspot areas, and more must be done to manage the risks The disease is typically most severe in wetter regions with a history of mixed cropping, such as Scotland and northern or western England, but isolated cases occur across the UK, with losses exceeding 50% of yield potential in the worst-affected crops. “Clubroot is still a relatively niche problem compared to diseases like light leaf spot, but we’re seeing more cases around the country, and for growers in hotspot areas there’s a high proportion who have at least one field affected,” Limagrain’s Vasilis Gegas says. “It mirrors what we’re seeing elsewhere in Europe where clubroot incidence is increasing, possibly as a consequence of climate change resulting in more frequent, milder and wetter winters. It is why the disease is our most heavily-invested oilseed rape breeding trait, aside from turnip yellows virus.” Resistant hybrid varieties such as; Archimedes, offer a valuable option for growing oilseed rape on infected land, and newcomers such as; Alasco, promise to virtually eliminate the “yield drag”

associated with resistant varieties in the past, says Dr Gegas. “Alasco is the next generation of clubroot resistant varieties, with a yield close to mainstream

varieties and oil content 3% higher than Archimedes.” Alasco retains and enhances many of the traits in Archimedes that were developed specifically

In my view


By John Cameron Balbuthie, Kilconquhar, Fife

Brexit Bite may be worse than its bark! for northern areas, such as robust light leaf spot resistance, short stiff straw, pod shatter resistance and early maturity. Agrii northern seed sales manager; Rodger Shirreff, who plans to try Alasco for the first time this autumn says, Archimedes has served growers well over recent years, allowing good yields to be produced from clubroot-infected land. The variety’s vigorous autumn establishment is particularly

beneficial as it allows the taproot to establish quickly, providing a solid foundation to build on. It is also one of the quicker varieties to resume growth in the spring, he notes. “Clubroot is a widespread issue in Scotland, that’s been perpetuated by tight (one year in four) rotations. But it’s not limited to Scotland; we’re also seeing increasing problems further south, so more growers are moving to resistant varieties.”

Brassica break adds value to grassland reseeding

Brassica fodder crops can be an ideal break crop for Scottish sheep farmers planning to rejuvenate grassland and will also help boost short-term feed availability, said Germinal’s William Fleming at NSA ScotSheep. If drilling in mid to late summer, he recommends the fast-growing hybrid brassicas Swift or Redstart, which have the

potential to provide up to seven tonnes of dry matter per hectare within 10-12 weeks of sowing. “By growing brassicas in between old grassland and a new reseed you are cleaning the ground very effectively, as there are two opportunities for weed control,” he says. “In some cases, there may still be time to do this ahead of an

In my last article I referred to the importance of agriculture to the rural economy and whilst we did have a ‘sheep evening’ in the Scottish Parliament I am be beginning to despair if those who are negotiating Brexit are fully aware of the comprehensive role of our industry in the economy. I attended the recent Scotsheep event at Ballantrae and the general thrust from the main speakers was certainly not encouraging. Jim McLaren – Chairman of QMS talked about ‘a doomsday’ scenario if we have no access to Europe and urged us all to camp on Michael Gove’s door. Jim also reminded us however that lamb consumption in Scotland is currently at 3Kg/head compared to 4½Kg in the whole of the UK and 7Kg/head in Australia. Food for thought indeed! Another speaker – Isla Roebuck, - President of the British Meat Processors also recommended that we should all meet outside Mr Gove’s office. He pointed out that if there was no deal then fresh chilled sheepmeat going into the EU could face a tariff of 51%! Scott Donaldson, President of the Scottish Auctioneers spoke of the urgency for Scotland to have a viable livestock industry and that without one the social infrastructure in the remote areas would simply disappear. Earlier John Scott the local MSP – who had opened the event – spoke of the need for a national debate to establish a vision for future livestock in Scotland and how it should be

encouraged and supported. I guess if any one of these speakers had made their remarks in isolation – whilst the content would have been noted – it was really impressive that such a range of knowledgeable and competent speakers should all be expressing serious concerns for the future of our industry. I only hope Mr Gove was listening! So much for the future concern for the Scottish Sheep Sector – but I must put on record a similar concern from the Beef Sector. At a recent Wholesalers conference concern was again expressed about the urgent need to halt the decline in suckler cow numbers. Jim Brown – who comments regularly on beef matters – reckons that whatever resources are agreed – either through WTO or EU – or UK rules they should be directed to the calf. Jim also thinks the present ‘EUROP’ cattle grading scheme needs to be replaced. Again food for thought! My final quote comes from that well known Euro agricultural journalist Richard Wright. Richard said recently that one of the biggest threats facing the UK beef industry is the new Mercosur trade deal with South America. This deal which could well be completed by July would give special tariff access to some 99,000 tons into the EU. The implications of that deal don’t bear thinking about! My apologies for being somewhat pessimistic – not like me! Maybe the next article will be more positive. At least the sun is now shining! 7

arable autumn reseed, using the brassica as a short-term grazing crop to fill a late summer forage gap. Alternatively, the brassica could provide autumn or out-wintering forage, ahead of spring reseeding.” Mr Fleming says that good results can be achieved by spraying off the old swards with glyphosate and then direct drilling the brassica crop, with this being particularly useful in upland areas. “Ploughing may not always be the best option, particularly where slopes or stones are a potential problem,” he adds. “Drilling the seed directly into the old sward also minimises poaching and keeps the stock cleaner. “If there are any problems in the old sward with weeds such as docks and nettles, I would recommend use of a specific weed killer before burning it off with glyphosate to prevent reinfestation.” Fertiliser should be applied in line with the results of soil sampling, to ensure brassica crops achieve their full potential.


Insecticide ban to protect bees is legal The EU Court of Justice confirmed that the 2013 the European Commission decision to protect bees by introducing a ban on the use of three neonicotinoid insecticides on flowering crops, was proper and legal. Bayer and Syngenta had challenged the decisions, throwing everything at the cases and claiming that: the EC exceeded its remit; the economic cost to the pesticide industry should have been a key factor in the decision; the bee pesticide risk assessment document should not have been used (because all member states had not endorsed it); the science showed neonicotinoids were safe to bees; and that there were several other grounds. Buglife and a number of European NGOs stepped in to support the EC in the court room, intervening by sending experts and lawyers

to participate in the cases held in February 2017. On the other side of the room the pesticides companies were bolstered by legal teams from seed distributors and farmer’s unions.

The decisions of the court, rejects the pesticide companies’ claims and ensures that not only does the 2013 partial ban decision stand, but that in the future bees should only suffer ‘negligible’ exposure to harmful pesticides.

arable Attracting pollinators easy as A, Bee, C Practical guides show how insects can improve crop yields

The Scottish Government’s Farm Advisory Service (FAS) programme, which is delivered by specialists from SAC Consulting, part of Scotland’s Rural College (SRUC), has produced two new practical guides on pollinating insects, which play a key role in agriculture. Bumblebees, hoverflies and solitary bees are among the pollinating insects that form a vital part of ecological systems, including agriculture and croft production. Pollination is the first step in the flowering/fruiting process, resulting in the production of vegetables and fruits. The essential nutrition comprises approximately 35 per cent of the human diet. The production of 84 per cent of crop species cultivated in Europe depends directly on pollinators, while 70 per cent of the 124 main crops used directly for human consumption in the world are dependent on pollinators Crops such as oilseed rape and apples are particularly dependent on pollinator contributions, with insects contributing approximately a quarter to oilseed rape and as much as 85 per cent to apple yields. SRUC research ecologists have created the following top

tips to help pollinators thrive on farms: • Leave rough areas, banks, hedges, dykes, ditches and field margins undisturbed to provide cover and shelter • Provide a diversity of plants to benefit a wide range of pollinating species and ensure a continuous supply of sugarrich nectar and protein-rich pollen from March until September. Plants include clovers, vetches, phacelia, knapweed, teasel and cornflower • Complete an Integrated Pest Management (IPM) plan to ensure pesticide and fertiliser applications are minimised by using crop rotations, choosing resistant varieties and using pest thresholds Dr Lorna Cole from SRUC, co-author of the guides, said: “Flower-rich field margins provide an excellent source of food for pollinators during summer and early autumn. However, we need to consider all the resources these insects require. Providing rough ground for shelter and nesting sites and planting spring-flowering shrubs and trees, such as willow, blackthorn and bird cherry trees, will help to ensure that your farm has everything pollinators need.”

arable The World’s First Liquid Fertilizer to Contain EVERY Essential Plant Nutrient

A complete liquid fertilizer that contains every essential plant nutrient has been the ‘holy grail’ of liquid fertilizers for many decades. Many have tried to create such a product, all have failed. That is why the development of “Gold Leaf” by Plater Bio is such a major achievement. Plater Bio, founded in 2016 in Glossop (Derbyshire, UK) and have been developing Gold Leaf for the last two years. Plater Bio founder Dr Russell Sharp says “the aim when creating Gold Leaf was not only to produce a product that contained every essential nutrient, but which was also buffered to the exact pH that plants need for optimal growth and with all the micronutrients in a chelated form in order to keep them available to the plant”. The immediate, and most obvious use for Gold Leaf is as a hydroponic fertilizer. Currently hydroponic systems rely on two or three-part products that all need to be kept in separate tanks, blended, dosed, pH controlled, and monitored for electrical conductivity (EC). All these tasks need to be completed before 10

fertilizer can be applied to the crop. In contrast, Gold Leaf is simply mixed with water at the desired rate and is then ready for use. While Gold Leaf was initially designed for hydroponics, it is now being trialled in other agricultural systems, such as field crops. Plater Bio founder Dr Russell Sharp adds “we are finding there is a lot of interest in Gold Leaf from conventional farming. This is because, as a complete nutrient solution, Gold Leaf reduces the number of products that need to be applied to a crop, thus saving farmers time, money, and water.” While there are suspension products already available that contain lots of plant nutrients, they contain solid material suspended in liquid. The problem with suspension fertilizers is that the solid part (calcium phosphate and calcium sulphate) are completely insoluble, even when diluted down and left for days. This is not surprising as calcium phosphate is the principal component that makes animal bones! This means the calcium and phosphate are not available to the plant, plus the solid particles can block applicator filters. The lack of calcium in conventional compound fertilizers has limited crop yields globally as calcium is essential for many metabolic processes in plants. This has meant crops regularly suffer from physiological disorders caused by calcium deficiency, such as Blossom End Rot in tomatoes, or Bitter Pit in apples. In addition, it is now widely accepted that modern fruit and vegetables contain far less mineral nutrients (such as calcium) which are essential for meeting human nutritional demands. As such the team at Plater Bio believe that Gold Leaf is set to become a major new tool employed by farmers in all sectors in the near future. Gold Leaf is now being tested by potential distribution partners globally and Plater Bio are happy to speak with organisations looking to partner on realising the full potential of Gold Leaf.

arable New fertiliser technology to boost yields and efficiencies Farmers using traditional fertilisers are not maximising nutritional efficiencies, and could substantially boost yields by adopting more up-to-date technology. According to Cyril Cappe, General Manager at Timac Agro UK, single super phosphate (SSP), diammonium phosphate (DAP) and triple super phosphate (TSP) have been around for decades – and there has been very little innovation in the fertiliser industry since then. Until now. “We’ve been doing a lot of research into making more efficient use of inputs to increase gross margins at farm level,” explains Mr Cappe. “This includes working with more than 100 universities and institutes around the globe, including Rothamsted Research, where we do both laboratory and field work.” One of the results is TOP PHOS, a unique phosphate fertiliser with a different chemical formula to previous fertiliser compounds. “It has all the benefits of being water soluble, like TSP or DAP, but is protected against lock up in both alkaline and acidic soils. This means it remains in a usable form for the plant, unlike other fertilisers which become locked up if the pH departs from 6.5-7,” explains Mr Cappe.

The fertiliser also contains a biological activity booster – to release phosphorous to the plant - and stimulates root growth to increase nutrient uptake. “In a recent wheat trial, TOP PHOS increased yields by 0.76t/Ha to 10.81t/Ha, when compared to TSP,” he says. The protein content also increased from 11.4% to 11.6%, due to better nutrient usage by the plant, including nitrogen. Similar results were seen in grassland, with yields over two silage cuts increasing by more than 0.5t/ ha of dry matter, to nearly 4.2t/ ha, when comparing TOP PHOS against SSP. Another technology, which is already in use in the UK, is PHYSACTIV – included in a range of phosphate and potash fertilisers to increase biological activity and nutrient release. Containing seaweed complex and Calcimer, it optimises the pH for bacteria and stimulates root hair development to improve uptake efficiencies. “In trials, PHYSACTIV increased potassium, calcium and magnesium levels in cereals by 25%, 30% and 20%, respectively, to almost 55mg, 15mg and 5mg/plant,” explains Mr Cappe. At tillering, wheat took up 27% more phosphorous and 9% more potassium, against the control of 100%.

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But when Tom rang 0300 111 4166, his need was especially acute, having suffered severe depression for some time. Working alone, the illness had taken its toll on more than just himself. Tom explains, “RSABI played a big part in getting my life back, which in turn helped me move away from thoughts of taking my own life. Without the variety of help and support I received from my calls, the outcome on my life and those around me would probably have been sadly a lot different. Their skill and ability to listen to my problems was invaluable”. Tom has returned to the helpline more recently when events started to affect how he was feeling once more. Happily, Tom now reports that talking again helped him achieve some sort of closure and allowed him to move on. (Name changed to preserve anonymity) The RSABI helpline on 0300 111 4166 operates

RSABI’s helpline is here to give a helping hand when needed for people in Scottish agriculture every day of the year from 7am – 11pm. RSABI provides emotional practical and financial support to individuals and their families across the agricultural sector including farming, crofting and growing. Learn more about this important service from a short film featuring one of our dedicated call operators at Join the RSABI Supporter Scheme as an individual or business by visiting the website. £25 or £2 a month over a year provides 3 hours of helpline support, making a big difference to someone from the agricultural community who is struggling to cope. On Friday 31 August, 25 teams from the agricultural business sector take on The Great Glen Challenge. Find out more and support the teams at www.virginmoneygiving. com/fund/RSABIGGC18

potatoes Hutton hits highlight blight risk building Potato crops are under increasing blight pressure, with repeated hits of Hutton Criteria that indicate infection risks. The Hutton Criteria has now largely replaced conventional Smith periods, since blight outbreaks were still occurring even when a Smith Period had not been triggered, reports Syngenta eastern counties potato specialist, David Wilson. “This season BlightCast disease risk forecasting has already repeatedly triggered Hutton Criteria warnings, particularly in hot, humid thundery weather with localised downpours,” he warned. “Many crops are emerging and going through rapid canopy growth, with new leaves which are especially vulnerable to infection, just as the risk is building. “During this time it is essential to maintain the most effective foliar protection available, with leading EuroBlight foliar fungicides such as Revus for combined leaf blight, new growth and protectant properties.” Hutton Criteria is believed to better reflect conditions where new strains of blight can actively develop, by reducing the period of relative humidity at 90 per cent or above down to six hours, from an eleven hour period used to trigger a Smith Period, Mr Wilson pointed out experience at the Eurofins trials site in Derbyshire last year


demonstrated the effectiveness of new Hutton Criteria in forewarning blight outbreaks. “BlightCast showed the first Hutton Criteria hits for the site were on the 18th August, but no Smith Periods triggered until 22nd August; in that time the visual assessment of blight inoculated trials went from virtually nothing detectable to widespread infection.” “Furthermore, Syngenta remote sensing of the trials site

by aerial crop health imagery clearly indicated when and where infection was running through untreated plots.” “Where growers and agronomists can use this information for better timing of Revus applications, it could help protect from foliar blight more effectively,” he advocated. “Alongside the use of products with tuber blight activity, part of the clear AHDB advice this season is to

prevent foliar blight infection to minimise the risk of tuber blight, using the best EuroBlight foliar fungicides available, and avoiding stretching application intervals beyond the weakest link in any mix application.” He also cited the importance of Revus’ rainfast properties, which is recognised as being a significant advantage in catchy wet conditions - which are the most challenging for application during high blight risk periods.

potatoes Switching to liquid fertiliser proving to be right move Switching part of the fertiliser regime on a Scottish arable enterprise to one that includes liquids has made a significant impact on cereal yields, as well as a boost to saleable yields of potatoes. This approach taken by the 4500 acre Slains Park Farm, Kinneff, Montrose, Aberdeenshire has also seen a reduction in the need for contractors who had been employed to apply much of the nutrition across the farm. The impact of switching has been felt in application timeliness, logistics, accuracy and storage issues too. Farm manager Marc Skivington has overseen the switch from granular to liquids and from recent farm trials carried out on the farm, will be

increasing the amount of liquids used this year and beyond. “Both fertiliser systems cost about the same although it is possible to buy the liquid when prices are low and store on site,” he says. “And there’s also the problem of storing bagged fertiliser in sheds that might already be full of potatoes from harvest plus when bags are empty there is the environmental issue of disposing of them. “Liquids are much more accurate to apply with virtually no risk of contaminating field margins and water courses. Also granular fertiliser that is left in the tank needs to be spread to get it out of the spreader, where as with liquids it just needs pumping back into the tank.” In 2015 all potato land was treated with granular N:P:K

Plant Health Centre: helping keep Scotland’s plants safe By Professor Ian Toth A new Scottish Governmentfunded Plant Health Centre of Expertise aims to help Scotland deal with threats from pests and diseases to plants across forestry, horticulture, environment and agriculture. Plants play a major role in our lives, from helping to control the climate and supporting biodiversity to enhancing social wellbeing. They also play the major role in the production of our food, whether that food is based on plants or animals. Even in high-quality production areas such as Scotland, crops suffer from a range of different pests and, depending on the crop, farm management practices, geographic location and climate, the impacts of these pests and diseases can be enormously. In Europe, crop losses due to pests are approximately 15-20% annually, even with the use of the latest management practices, including chemical control. In Scotland alone losses amount to almost a million tonnes of production valued at £200 million per year, with consequences to food production downstream. Such losses invariably mean higher prices in supermarkets, challenging times for businesses and a knock-on effect to the economy.

The withdrawal of certain chemical controls following Directives from Europe can only mean greater losses unless new approaches are found. Regular trade with Europe, the likelihood of increased trade with the rest of the world following Brexit, and the challenges that climate change brings, mean that we are almost certain to face new threats in the future. The UK Plant Health Risk Register has over a thousand potential threats to plants within the UK and contains some potentially very damaging pests to our major crops, including Zebra chip and Epitrix on potato, spotted wing drosophila on soft fruit and black stem rust or dagger nematodes on cereals. The virtual Plant Health Centre brings together plant sectors to co-ordinate plant health knowledge, skills, needs and activities across Scotland, and works with Scottish Government, farmers, public bodies, industry, the public and other stakeholders to provide scientific evidence that will help make informed decisions about how to keep Scotland’s plants safe. If you would like to know more, visit www., email or follow @PlantHealthScot on Twitter. 13

potatoes Outstanding candidates sought for industry awards Nominations are now being sought for the British Potato Industry Award and the AHDB Above and Beyond Award. The two awards are given out annually to some of the sector’s most dedicated and talented individuals, those who have made a genuine difference to the industry. AHDB Potato Board Chair, Sophie Churchill OBE, explains: “We want to recognise

but the loss of Shirlan for scab control meant the company needed to look for alternatives. “In 2016 we started using ammonium sulphate but we were in the hands of the contractor due to the high rates of up to 1000l/ ha,” says Mr Skivington. “So we tried OMEX Nitroflo 24 + S plus elemental sulphur, which we applied to potato ground before planting and worked in with a Simba TL cultivator

before ridging up. The sulphur drops the soil pH and frees up essential locked up elements. We also included zinc oxide and zinc sulphate to help reduce powdery scab.” Applied over a 6ha plot he observed that the crop treated with Nitroflo 24 + S plus elemental sulphur looked much healthier by August, was brighter and had cleaner tubers with less scab.

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and celebrate the significant achievements of those people who leave a lasting mark on the industry. People for whom potatoes are their purpose and their passion. “While the awards are partly about thanking them for their efforts, they also allow us to highlight the breadth of knowledge, innovation and talent this sector possesses, and the fantastic opportunities which are

potatoes available to the next generation in the potato industry. “If you know someone who has devoted much of their working life to the sector, or you are impressed by the enthusiasm and diligence demonstrated by someone with just a handful of years’ experience, then please do put their names forward, as they could be one of our winners.” The awards will be presented at this year’s Seed Industry Event on 15 November in St Andrew’s, Scotland. This biennial conference attracts 250 delegates from across the sector who will gather to discuss key issues including plant health, consumer trends, international markets and Brexit.

efforts have left a substantial and lasting mark on the sector – include leading growers, variety breeders, specialists in research development and knowledge transfer, storage engineers, processing specialists, machinery designers and journalists.

British Potato Industry Award This award – now in its 21st year – is presented to those who have contributed significant service to the industry over a considerable period of time. Previous British Potato Industry Award recipients - whose

The closing date for submissions is Monday 1 October 2018. For further information contact: Award committee secretary, Margaret Skinner, AHDB Potatoes, Tel: 0131 297 7460.

Above and Beyond The AHDB Above and Beyond Award is presented to an exceptional performer or to an individual who has made a significant achievement over the last five years. Submitting a nomination is a simple process and can be done via the AHDB Potatoes website

crofting A brave new vision for Scottish agriculture By Patrick Krause, Chief Executive, Scottish Crofting Federation There have been many reviews of Scottish agriculture over the past decade or so, and another, albeit a necessity one given impending Brexit, was in danger of just repeating the same old platitudes. However, the final report delivered by Scottish Government’s ‘Agriculture Champions’, “A Future Strategy for Scottish Agriculture”, makes for a very refreshing read, giving recommendations for a radical new approach. We were concerned about the lack of coverage of crofting in the interim discussion document but the Champions have taken on board our response, and the report has been ‘croft-proofed’. For example, when discussing Natural Capital the Champions acknowledge that Scotland has huge areas of less favoured permanent grassland and rough grazing, where high nature value farming is both traditional and common. They recommend that, “Future policies must address the specific needs of this type of farming, including the fact that low profitability threatens its very survival.” This is indeed the case for crofters and ties in with the recent study carried out for the Highlands and Islands

Agricultural Support Group, another report very well worth a look at. We are particularly impressed that the Champions have grasped the ‘capping’ nettle. They recommend that support payments are capped, maintaining current levels for small and medium holdings but reducing payments to bigger recipients in order to fund a more equitable and results-focussed system. This was a central provision of the SCF policy document published last year. The Champions also talk about future funding being “tailored to regional or sectoral needs because one size does not fit all”; crofting always seems to be an addon, especially common grazings. They also recognise that “the policy priorities to be supported must cover purely public goods such as wildlife and carbon sequestration for which there is no market mechanism”. We have long argued for public payment for the provision of public goods and ‘Public Value’ is central to the Champions’ thinking. As always, the more difficult phase is the detailed formulation of new policies



New distillery brings Crabbie malt whisky back to Edinburgh after 100 years John Crabbie & Co has announced that it plans to build a new single malt whisky distillery in Leith, Edinburgh, reviving one of the most famous brand names in Scotch whisky. Crabbie parent company, Halewood Wines & Spirits has today announced plans to invest over £7m in a new Scotch Whisky distillery in Leith the original home of the Crabbie brand, established in 1801. Expected to open in early 2019, the distillery will be on Graham St, very close to John Crabbie’s original premises at Yardheads, Great Junction Street and this will be the first single malt distillery to open in the city for over 100 years, bringing significant investment and employment to the area. For more than two centuries the Crabbie name has been a much loved and enduring Edinburgh drinks brand. Most recently it has been associated with Crabbie’s green ginger wine and for a range of popular ginger beers, but the real history of the Crabbie name lies in Scotch whisky. John Crabbie was a pioneer, who built his brand around the idea of improving the quality of Scotch Whisky. He gained a reputation for selecting the best casks available from over 70 distilleries from all

around Scotland, to sell under the Crabbie name, sometimes blending them together to improve their flavour and exporting throughout the world, as far away as New Zealand. His visionary approach led to the creation of the North British grain distillery in Edinburgh, a business that is still thriving today. With the decline of the Scotch Whisky industry and of the port of Leith during the 20th century, the Crabbie whisky brand, like

so many others, disappeared and Edinburgh lost it’s status as the capital of Scotch whisky. Commenting on the investment plans David Brown, managing director, John Crabbie & Co says: “We are delighted to announce our plans to invest in the creation of a new distillery in Leith. It’s particularly pleasing that it will bear the name of John Crabbie, surely one of Edinburgh’s most legendary sons. The site we have chosen

in Leith has historical links with Scotch whisky production and maturation dating back over 200 years and we hope it will contribute to the rising prosperity of the area with the creation of new jobs and through attracting additional visitors to the city. With the growing popularity of Scotch whisky around the world the time is right to rediscover the Crabbie whisky brand and to put Edinburgh firmly back on the Scotch whisky map ”.

Quality Meat Scotland Unveils Focused Five Year Strategy and Vision The organisation tasked with promoting some of Scotland’s most iconic food brands, Quality Meat Scotland, has unveiled a new strategy and vision for the five-year period to 2023. Speaking at QMS’s spring media briefing, Jim McLaren, 16

Chairman of QMS, said the development of new strategic priorities had followed full and careful consideration of the factors influencing the different parts of the Scottish red meat industry. “The development of QMS’s strategic priorities involved input

from our board and executive team along with our wider staff and key stakeholders over a five-month period and took into consideration the challenges and opportunities which exist for the businesses operating in the various areas of our industry,” said Mr McLaren.

Quality Meat Scotland’s overall strategy for 2018 to 2023 is “to support the development of a sustainable, professional, resilient and profitable Scottish red meat industry which makes an important contribution to Scotland Food & Drink’s target of £30bn by 2030”.

FLAVOUR OF SCOTLAND This strategy is closely aligned with the Scottish Government’s economic strategy of increasing sustainable economic growth and the next phase of Scotland’s National Food and Drink Policy Becoming a Good Food Nation as well as Scotland Food & Drink’s “Ambition 2030” vision. Alan Clarke, chief executive of QMS, said that soon after he took over the reins as chief executive ten months ago it become very apparent to him that QMS as an organisation is delivering a very impressive and diverse workload for the industry. “I have been incredibly impressed with the sheer scale of work being delivered by the team of around 20 staff here – from marketing, economic analysis and our work on health and education in schools to quality assurance and activities to support our industry to be profitable and sustainable,” said Mr Clarke. “As an organisation QMS is definitely punching above its weight and doing so with limited staff resource and tight budgets. With that commitment to delivering for the industry as a backdrop, I have made focusing on refreshing our strategic priorities top of our list since joining QMS. “What we now have is a strategy which will position the organisation well to deliver strongly during the next five years, which are certain to be a time of unprecedented change,” he added. The new strategy features four very clear key aims. The first is to build the Scotch Beef

PGI, Scotch Lamb PGI and Specially Pork brands through quality assurance and effective marketing and communications with consumers. Over 70% of QMS’s external levy spend is on consumer-facing activity. Another key aim is to support the sustainable growth of the industry through strategic engagement with key stakeholders, supply chain collaboration and cascade of key market information. The third is to develop capability and capacity in the Scottish red meat industry through training and education initiatives which attract, motivate and develop the workforce. The fourth is to deliver professional services which support the continued growth of a resilient, professional Scottish red meat industry able to grasp opportunities and meet challenges. Having spent much of his first 10 months travelling around Scotland to meet people working in every part of the Scottish red meat industry, Mr Clarke said the industry had a great deal to be proud of. “Equally, QMS takes great pride in the work it delivers for the Scottish red meat industry which supports 50,000 jobs and generates over £2 billion for Scotland’s economy. “Our vision, developed as part of our strategic review, is to be valued by our key stakeholders as a business support organisation which delivers strongly for the Scottish red meat industry as it continues to build a global reputation for animal welfare, quality assurance and integrity”.

magazine Supporting

FARMERS MARKETS IN SCOTLAND Aberdeen Country Fair www.aberdeencountryfair. Alford Farmers’ Market alfordfarmersmarket Argyll Country Markets Ayrshire Farmers’ Market www.ayrshirefarmersmarket. Balerno Farmers’ Market Blairgowrie Community Market Cairndow and Loch Fyne Farmers’ Market Campbeltown Farmers’ Market Clarkston Farmers’ Market enquiry@ lanarkshirefarmersmarket. Cupar Farmers’ Market Dundee Farmers’ Market lorna.mckenzie@dundeecity. Dunfermline Farmers’ Market Edinburgh Farmers’ Market www.edinburghfarmersmarket. com Edinburgh - Stockbridge Farmers’ Market Falkirk Farmers’ Market howard.wilkinson2@btinternet. com Fencebay Farmers’ Market Forfar Farmers’ Market www.angusfarmersmarket. Glasgow Farmers’ Market Mansfield Park www.citymarketsglasgow. Glasgow Farmers’ Market Queen’s Park www.citymarketsglasgow.

Greenock Farmers’ Market Haddington Farmers’ Market Hamilton Farmers’ Market www. lanarkshirefarmersmarket. Hawick Farmers’ Market Inverurie Farmers’ Market e: Kelso Farmers’ Market Kirkcaldy Farmers’ Market Linlithgow Farmers’ Market Loch Lomond Shores Farmers’ Market Lochwinnoch Farmers’ Market david.oneill@clydemuirshiel. Lockerbie Farmers’ Market www.lockerbiefarmersmarket. Milngavie Farmers’ Market Montrose Farmers’ Market uk Oban And Lorn Markets Overton Farm Farmers’ Market www. lanarkshirefarmersmarket. Paisley Farmers’ Market Peebles Farmers’ Market Perth Farmers’ Market www.perthfarmersmarket. Portpatrick Farmers’ Market St Andrews Farmers’ Market Stirling Farmers’ Market Stornoway Farmers’ Market

For your market to be listed

cooking with game

Glazed Partridge on Barley Risotto By Wendy Barrie 3 partridge 100g pearl barley Summer Harvest Rapeseed Oil Isle of Skye Sea Salt & freshly milled pepper 150g mushrooms, cleaned & quartered 75g butter 1 leek, washed & sliced 2tbsps redcurrant jelly For glaze: 1tbsp Galloway Chilli original 1 tbsp Orkney Craft Vinegar 1 dessertspoon brown sugar 1 ladle game stock

Photos Š Wendy Barrie

Generous pinch of oregano & rosemary for stock

Method: s 0ORTIONGAMEBIRDSINREADINESSFORSERVINGBREASTSANDWINGLEGSOPIECESFROMEACHBIRD ANDPLACEOTHERPARTSINAPAN for stock. Cover bones with boiling water, season with salt, pepper and herbs. Simmer for at least half an hour before ladling out any liquid. s 3AUTĂ?PARTRIDGEPORTIONSINBUTTERWITHADRIZZLEOFRAPESEEDOILUNTILGOLDEN ADDINGMUSHROOMSANDSEASON2EMOVEFROM pan. Set aside mushrooms and place partridge in an ovenware dish with glaze ingredients. Place in pre heated oven at 190 C, covered with foil, and braise whilst barley cooking on hob. Remove foil towards end of cooking time to reduce sauce. s -EANWHILEADDBARLEYTOTHEFRYINGPANWITHALLTHELOVELYmAVOURSANDSAUTĂ?WITHSLICEDLEEKS'RADUALLYADDLADLESOFSTOCK deglazing the pan and simmering the barley. It will take approx. 45mins to soften. s 4OWARDSENDOFCOOKING ADDMUSHROOMSTOBARLEY ADJUSTSEASONINGTOTASTEANDBLENDINREDCURRANTJELLY s 3ERVEINBOWLSWITHPARTRIDGESETONTOPOFBARLEY Serves 2 generous portions

Partridges kindly supplied by Craigadam. Craigadam Country House Hotel & Country Larder is on the outskirts of Castle Douglas where Richard and Celia Pickup have been entertaining guests for over 40 years. Their accommodation is beautiful and it is a very popular venue for weddings. Their country house style dining is rightly famed across Scotland as I can testify having just dined with a group of Les Dames d’Escoffier International who adored both their hosts and their dinner. Richard is a highly entertaining raconteur, sharing tales from the estate with the gathered guests.

Scotland’s foodie, Wendy Barrie is a highly respected campaigner for local sustainable food, popular cookery show presenter and food writer. Founder & Director of award-winning & www. . Wendy is Leader in Scotland for Slow Food Ark of Taste & Slow Food Chef Alliance Member. 18

O U R FA R M SHOP Auchentullich Farm Shop

Auchentullich farm shop is a small traditional dairy farm that has been farming for 5 generations in Loch Lomond and the National Park, situated on the A82. In 2013 the farm decided to diversify due to the difficulty faced within the milk industry. Since then, the shop has had a real focus on promoting local and Scottish food from small producers across the country. Being in the everstruggling dairy industry they decided to start producing their

own homemade ice cream and selling their own free range nonhomogenised milk, using the shop as an outlet. This artisan ice cream is truly special using lots of small Scottish producers as flavouring’s i.e. Arran Gold Malt Whisky Cream Liqueur, John Mellis heather honey, crystals shortbread, Galloway lodge Seville marmalade to name just a few. Being part of food from Argyll, a small cooperative of food producers, allows the shop to work with a group of people

with similar passions in the area, promoting good food from the region. In conjunction with the dairy the farm also started rearing homegrown highland cattle in 2013. This slow grown native bread brings another element to the farm production, selling the meat in the shop. All year round the shop sells tea, coffee and freshly made filled sandwiches using local produce i.e. ham, salami, cheese etc. Predominantly these are a take away service however if you are

lucky there is one small table you can sit and enjoy next to a warm and cosy stove with sheepskin covered seats. As well as keeping cosy by the stove you can enjoy your filled sandwiches in the garden area in summer, which has seating and a small kids swing. If you’re travelling north or back home you can’t miss this stop. Whither it’s a cuppa and a sandwich for the road, something nice for your dinner or some nice goodies to fill your fridges and cupboards here you’ll find it all.

Hours of opening: Mon-Sun 10am-6pm Auchentullich Farm Shop, Arden, Alexandria G83 8RF Telephone : 01389 850240


EU NEWS By Chris McCullough

Farmers should take note as new CAP proposals hit the table NEW proposals for the new CAP 2021-2027 with a budget of 365 billion have been put forward with the usual promises to make it all simpler for farmers. Even though it may not be fully applicable to UK farmers who are making a swift exit from the EU, measures of control will undoubtedly be shadowed and implemented by the UK government going forward. Plus there will be areas where the new CAP will remain in force until the Brexit honeymoon period is over and UK is truly on its own. According to EU Commissioner for Agriculture and Rural Development, Phil Hogan, the new CAP will again boost young farmers coming into the industry and be more friendly to the environment. One of the more concerning aspects of it for farmers is the proposed cap of direct payments at 100,000 per farm.

Hogan said: “The proposal delivers on the Commission’s commitment to modernise and simplify the Common Agricultural Policy; delivering genuine subsidiarity for Member States; ensuring a more resilient agricultural sector in Europe; and increasing the environmental and climate ambition of the policy.” Some of the main points include; 1 Member States will also have the option to transfer up to 15% of their CAP allocations between direct payments and rural development and viceversa to ensure that their priorities and measures can be funded. 2 Direct payments will remain an essential part of the policy, ensuring stability and predictability for farmers. Priority will be given to supporting the small and

medium-sized farms that constitute the majority of the EU’s farming sector, and to helping young farmers. However, direct payments to farmers will be set at a maximum of 100,000, with Member States able to set a national cap of between 60,000 and 100,000. Countries will have to set aside at least two per cent of their direct payment allocation for helping young farmers get set up. 3 At least 30 per cent of each rural development national allocation will be dedicated to environmental and climate measures. In fact, 40 per cent of the CAP’s overall budget is expected to contribute to climate action. Reacting to the proposals Copa and Cogeca warned against plans to erode farmers’

incomes and called for a real simplification of CAP rules. President Joachim Rukwied of the European Farmers Organisation Copa said: “We want a strong, competitive and more sustainable European agriculture and CAP in the future, with common and simple rules across the EU. We believe that when it comes to the new delivery model outlined in this proposal, it will not result in a real simplification of rules for farmers. “We are very concerned about the impact of these proposals. Direct payments, that are the best and by far most efficient way to stabilise farmers’ incomes and to help them to better manage income risks, are being eroded further under this proposal. We oppose any capping or degressivity of payments as proposed by the Commission.”

‘Eye in the sky’ technologies to replace physical CAP farm checks PHYSICAL checks on farms to evaluate area-based CAP payments are to be replaced with more reliance on the ‘eye in the sky’ according to the European Commission. This move to expressly use a range of modern technologies to carry out the checks is part of the new CAP in order to simplify 20

and modernise, according to the Commission. The new rules, which came into force on May 22 2018, will allow data from the EU’s Copernicus Sentinel satellites and other Earth observation data to be used as evidence when checking farmers’ fulfilment of requirements under the CAP

for area-based payments (either direct payments to farmers or rural development support payments), as well as crosscompliance requirements, such as stubble burning. Other new forms of evidence such as geo-tagged photos, information from drones and relevant supporting

documentation from farmers, such as seed labels, will also be acceptable for the first time, as part of a broader shift towards a so-called ‘monitoring approach’ that will lead to a decrease in the number of on-farm checks. Visits to the field will only be necessary when the digital evidence is not sufficient to verify compliance.

TURRIFF SHOW 2018 Sunday 5th and Monday 6th August

The 154th Turriff Show is set to take place at The Haughs, Queens Road, Turriff and is again hoping to attract exhibitors and visitors from far and near. The Main Sponsor this year is Agrii Limited. Agrii is responsible for a substantial footprint in Aberdeenshire, including a cereal plant at Turriff, a contract spraying base near Methlick and a chemical store in Inverurie. There will be a fantastic array of prizewinning cattle, sheep, horses, ponies and lines of impressive farm machinery

and much more. There are over 300 quality trade stands selling a wide range of goods, a Food Fayre, Indoor Shopping Mall, Exhibition Marquee, Art and Craft marquee and a huge marquee with a magnificent display of home-based crafts, flowers and vegetables. The exciting ringside programme includes first time appearance at Turriff Show for Devana Dog Agility Display Team who will enthral the crowds with their Sunday performance and there will be the open-themed Pageant

Parade. On Monday there will be excellent Heavy Horse Turnout displays as well as the everpopular horse jumping, vintage vehicles and sulky trotting. A new competition this year is the Mini-Major Relay when the prize winners in the Junior Show jumping will get the chance to team up with the winners from the Grand Prix Show jumping to see who can complete the fastest Show jumping round with the least faults. We are delighted to be hosting the Scottish National

Simmental Cattle Show again at Turriff Show and it is hoped to attract exhibitors from a very wide area. Mr Simon Key, Norwich will start judging at 8.30am on the Monday morning. In the livestock section, the overall champion-ofchampion will be judged by Mr Ronald Black, Fife. Other champion judges include Archie MacGregor, Kilsyth for the overall cattle; David Brown, Stirling for groups, pairs and young bull interbreed; Allan Wight, Biggar for overall sheep;


TURRIFF SHOW Andrew Bowie, Kinross for inhand horse and pony; and Lin Herridge, Ceredigion for ridden horse and pony. The popular marquee disco starts the Show weekend off on Friday 3rd August with music being provided by Night Fever Disco. Judging of the Horse and Pony classes takes place on Sunday. The Grand Parade of Prize winning Horses, Ponies and Donkeys takes place at 2.15pm. The Champion In-Hand and Champion Ridden winners are invited back on the Monday to compete for the Sleigh Family Trophy for the Supreme Champion of Champions of Turriff Show 2018. Also exhibiting on Sunday are Goats, Rabbits, Cavies and Pigeons. Monday is the day for the judging of the Cattle, Sheep, Clydesdale Horses and Poultry. The Stockjudging competition on Sunday is open to all members of SAYFC and continues to be as popular as ever with teams competing for the Silcock Challenge Shield. Teams have to consist of three members and each club may enter two teams but a third team may enter provided it is an All-Ladies team. Turriff Show hosts the largest Industrial and Horticulture marquee of any Show in Scotland. The Industrial marquee hosts competitive classes for a wide range of produce (eggs, butter, oatcakes etc.), preserves, cookery, honey, wine to sewing, knitting and woodcraft to name but a few. The Horticulture part is a very impressive display of varying kinds of flowers and vegetables and it is free to enter. There are over 250 wellpresented outdoor trade stands at Turriff Show. Agricultural trade stands include machinery stands with tractors and machinery from all the leading manufacturers and there will also be a very wide range of motor vehicle stands and a number of quality stands featuring renewable energy, heating products and alternative technologies. There are also a large number of stands from the agricultural service and supply industry in addition to 22

forestry and the countryside. Other stands include fashion and clothing, horticulture, garden furniture, arts, crafts and toys – something for everyone. This year’s Food Fayre has a wide variety of quality stands promoting the very best of predominantly Scottish food and drink. Take the opportunity to sample such traditional delights as the best of fresh and naturally smoked fish, marinated and air-dried Scotch Beef, award winning cheese, jams and chutneys, luxury ice cream, porridge oat flakes and oatmeal, fine wines and real fruit liqueurs or perhaps you might try a freshly made Cornish Pastie or be tempted with luxury handmade fudge and cakes! The Indoor Shopping Mall has a selection of stands offering a range of quality goods. Browse through a range of boutiques selling fashion accessories, ladies and children’s clothing, and jewellery or something for your home. There will also be original art and prints.

The Exhibition Marquee has a ‘lifestyle’ theme and some stands will be promoting good health, complimentary therapies and nutrition whilst others will showcase kitchen planning, local hotel venues, short stay breaks and local Heritage information. The Art and Craft marquee hosts an excellent selection of quality crafts stands. Visitors can expect to find original paintings and prints, hand crafted greetings cards, hair bows, needlefelt art, soaps, candles and a broad selection of jewellery stands. The new ‘gin and prosecco bar’ will offer a wide selection of local gins and premium whiskies as well as a nice cool glass of prosecco. A visit to the Old MacDonald’s InFARMation in The Ferguson Hall is a must for children. There will be exciting displays from local schoolchildren taking part in this year’s schools competition. There will also be hands-on activities for youngsters to try including interaction with TechFest and Scotty’s Circus Workshop.

Don’t’ forget to visit the animals in the CCOW. Children’s and Adult’s races will take place on both Show days – entry is free for all races with prize money and sweets (where applicable) awarded. Tug of War enthusiasts can look forward to a Tug of War competition confined to members of Young Farmers Clubs (teams of 6) on the Sunday afternoon. Look out for the Open Dog Show also on the Sunday where there are 133 classes (under Kennel Club Ltd Rules & Regulations) with the Companion Dog Show on Monday and dogs need not be K.C. Registered for the Companion Dog Show. If you are interested in music then there will be something for everyone. On the Sunday afternoon Turriff & District Pipe Band will be performing in the Showfield. Deveron River Brass Band will be performing in the Den Pavilion from 2pm and from 2pm on Monday afternoon will be the Turriff Junior Silver Band and both

TURRIFF SHOW Bands are very talented musicians and their programmes will include solos and a mixed repertoire of music to suit everyone. The finale on Sunday night will be the Vintage and Classic Vehicle Display with over 150 vintage tractors and 50 classic cars making their way round the ring – certainly a sight not to be missed! The Showground is open from 7.00am Sunday and Monday with Trade Stands open at 9.00am each day and Showground closes at 8.00pm Sunday and 6.00pm Monday. Adult Admission is £15: £13 advance, Concession (Senior Citizen/Student/Children 15 and over) - £10: £9 advance and Family Ticket £45: £40 advance. Children 14 and under are free. Discounted Admission Tickets are now on sale – visit website and also online entries are now being accepted.

Closing dates for entries are – Saturday 7th July – All Livestock and Open Dog Show, Saturday 14th July – YFC Stockjudging and Industrial Section, Saturday

21st July – Adult and Junior Showjumping and Vintage Vehicles. All Schedules and entry forms are available to download from the website.

We hope to see you at Turriff Show on Sunday 5th and Monday 6th August where there is something to suit all ages – come and see for yourself!



Bringing in the harvest A look at new and current combines available for 2018

Case IH Axial-Flow® 240 series With the renowned Axial-Flow® range and a wide choice of headers, the Case IH harvesting range will consistently perform at high capacity with best quality output. The 140 series comprises three models from 312 to 449hp, whilst the 240 series range from 498 to 634hp. Scottish farms face high yields and often unstable weather conditions and therefore require a combine that can harvest large areas as quickly and efficiently as possible. Case IH Axial-Flow combines – with the proven AxialFlow single rotor technology - are renowned for delivering high speed harvesting in these challenging conditions, with a gentle threshing action that delivers a superior grain sample and minimises losses. With a luxury cab with multifunction controller and plentiful power, the combines are available with header widths up to 12.5m to save

time in large fields and a grain tank of up to 14,400 litres. What’s more, the tank can be emptied quickly, with a maximum unloading rate of up to 159 litres/sec. and a proven pivoting spout to ensure that no grain drizzles from the spout when unloading is completed. The 240 series are available with full telematics from the factory, with the Case IH Advanced Farming System

(AFS) collecting important management data, whilst AFS autoguidance systems can use GNSS (Global Navigation Satellite System) to control auto-steering with an accuracy down to 2.5cm. They also have new and improved straw management options, allowing the straw spreader vanes to be adjusted individually to achieve perfect spreading even

with the largest headers and in green straw conditions, and the X-tra chop system delivering consistently well spread chopped straw that rapidly decomposes, discouraging slug activity. Of course, for those farmers that want to bale straw the combines offer a variable swath width, which leaves straw fluffy whatever the conditions, so it can be easily and quickly baled.

CLAAS high output straw-walker combine range The CLAAS range of AVERO, TUCANO and LEXION 600 straw-walker combines follow in the footsteps of a rich heritage, dating back to 1936 and the introduction of the CLAAS MDB, which was the first European designed and built combine in 1936, through to such well known models as the Senator, Matador and the DOMINATOR. From the smallest AVERO 240 through to the largest LEXION 670, the current CLAAS straw-walker combine range builds on this heritage and set the standard for efficiency, quality and high output harvesting. The CLAAS straw-walker range covers 11 models. These include five LEXION models, within which 24

COMBINES there is also the option of TERRA TRAC tracked machines and hillside MONTANA versions, a further five TUCANO models and finally the AVERO 240. A key component to the overall efficiency of CLAAS straw-walker combines (except the TUCANO 320) starts as soon as the crop enters the combine. Here

it passes through the well-proven APS three-section MULTICROP concave and accelerator. Initially the crop is accelerated from 3 metres/second to 20m/s. At the same time the crop is separated and the higher centrifugal forces mean that up to 30% of grains are already threshed out before the crop flows over the main concave, so reducing

the load and leaving it to thresh out the harder-to-thresh grains. Overall this helps increase output by around 20% without any increase in fuel consumption. The main CLAAS concave is also unique in that it has a 151 degree angle-of-wrap around the drum, which is longer than on other machines and ensures a more thorough threshing but at a

lower drum speed. So efficient is the APS system that by the time the crop passes through onto the straw walkers around 90% of the grain will have been separated. Depending on the model, strawwalker lengths range from 4.13m up to 4.4m on the largest LEXION 5- and 6-walker models, thereby providing a large separation area.

Deutz-Fahr C6205 combine harvester The C6205 completes the range of combine harvesters with a new design, innovative technical solutions for operator comfort and advanced systems to manage engine emissions. A gem in the category of 5 straw walker machines which embodies the technology and winning philosophy of the DEUTZFAHR systems that users already enjoy with the C7000 and C9000 range. Experience in the field and contact with loyal DEUTZFAHR customers has created the foundation for the C6205 – a combine aimed at medium-sized farms, capable of tackling all harvest conditions. Powered by a DEUTZ TCD 6.1l T4F engine providing 230hp of uncomprimised power. The engine management is designed to respond to peaks in load without losing productivity, whilst returning the lowest level of fuel requirement on the market per ton of harvested product. All models are equipped with high-performance cutter bars, available in standard form with cutting widths from 4.2M to 6.3M or Varicrop upto 6.5M which employs a hydraulic cutter bar system that can be extended up to 700mm. All cutter bars are a onepiece construction, available with Autocontrol and the Schumacher Easy Cut II system ensuring safe and efficient operation in all conditions, providing a uniform cut with minimal wear. The C6205 and C6205 TS are available with a host of features including the renowned Turbo Separator – an enhancement to the standard threshing system increasing the work capacity by up to 20%. The ‘Optimum’ threshing system has

the same characteristics as the 6 walker machines, guaranteeing maximum performance in all crops and making it particularly efficient in ‘greener’ and more challenging material. Separation capacity is maximised by the 600m wide drum and fully adjustable concave system; a segmented concave provides even greater threshing options. Power and delicacy distinguish the C6205 - thanks to the DEUTZ-FAHR branded cleaning system you get maximum yield and product quality guaranteed. Crop goes from the straw walker to the grain preparation pan, which distributes the product in a uniform manner. Before reaching the upper sieve, it gets to a pre-sieve which creates a double jump essential to slowing down the product before the actual cleaning process. The C6205 has two overlapping

sieves for a total surface area of 5.28 m2. The effectiveness of cleaning doesn‘t just come from the double jump and the sieves, a large contribution comes from the ventilation system with ‘cross flow’ turbine. Despite its compact size the C6205 has a turbine fan as a standard feature, which thanks to its large diameter (400 mm) and 44 blades along

the entire length of the rotor, manages to blow air on the whole width of the combine, not leaving any dead zones where the product isn‘t cleaned. Another distinctive feature of the C6205 is the DGR, which is a unique system that improves the combine harvester‘s performance, effectiveness of the threshing system and reduces losses.

John Deere introduces new automated combines John Deere has introduced for 2018. Four new S700 Series rotary combine models – the S770, S780, S785 and S790 for the UK and Irish markets – offer producers significant improvements in ‘smart’ technology, operator comfort

and data management. Building on the proven field performance of the S600 Series combines with variable stream rotor introduced in 2012, the S700 Series models incorporate the latest in automated harvesting technology. Many of the changes 25

COMBINES make it easier for the operator by allowing the combine to carry out the necessary adjustments automatically, on the go. To make it easier for operators to maximise the performance of these new combines, John Deere has introduced the next generation of automation, Integrated Combine Adjustment (ICA2). After optimising machine settings such as throughput, grain quality and losses, and cleanliness of the sample using ICA, the ICA2 system – which is part of the range’s new Combine Advisor package – changes both the threshing and cleaning system settings automatically to maintain the pre-selected output at a consistent level, whatever the harvesting conditions. Also within the Combine Advisor package, two ActiveVision cameras give the operator a view into the tailings and clean grain elevators via the cab

display. The system constantly analyses this information from the cameras along with the loss sensors to maintain optimal

threshing, separating and cleaning performance based on the operator set targets. According to a study conducted

by the University of Göttingen in Germany, ICA can improve utilisation of the combine’s builtin capacity by up to 20 per cent.

New IDEAL from Massey Ferguson Massey Ferguson has unveiled a new-generation rotary combine harvester range which promises a major step forward in performance and productivity for business-orientated farmers. Among a host of exceptional new features, models in the IDEAL from Massey Ferguson line-up offer the biggest integral grain-tank capacity now available on the European market, the fastest


unloading rate and the largest threshing area – all focussed on delivering significant gains in efficiency and output. “Built at AGCO’s European Harvesting Centre of Excellence in Breganze, Italy, the MF IDEAL range signals a radical new direction for our combine development,” says Adam Sherriff, Market Development Manager, Massey Ferguson

Harvesting, Europe and Middle East. “Utilising the full force of parent company AGCO’s global resources, this is the biggest new harvesting product development project we have ever undertaken. It included production of 45 prototypes and six years of continuous lab and global field tests measuring performance in all crops and conditions. Everything about the machines

is new - new design, new engineering, new features, new styling, even a brand-new livery in stunning graphite. Added to this, the 647hp MF IDEAL 9 represents a totally new market segment for Massey Ferguson.” “The impetus behind the R&D programme, which was based on our extensive ‘Voice of the Customer’ surveys, was to ensure that we created real business benefits for combine owners and operators, making a positive contribution to their profitability. Our focus was on fullyaddressing their key concerns in areas such as fuel-efficiency, performance, serviceability, easeof-repair, grain quality, residue management, transport width, data management, hillside working and soil compaction. Underpinned by Massey Ferguson’s design principles of efficiency, ease-of-use, simplicity and no-nonsense dependability, our IDEAL from Massey Ferguson Combines offer major benefits in all these areas and more,”


New Holland CR Revelation combines New Holland establishes the supremacy of the world’s highest capacity combine, the CR Revelation combine harvester, with a redesigned residue management system, improved adjustable crop flow, and a further power upgrade. It takes harvesting performance to a whole new level, increasing capacity by up to 10% while guaranteeing grain quality and outstanding residue management. Lars Skjoldager Sørensen, Head of Harvesting Product Line, said: “The CR combine was already the harvesting world record holder, the most powerful combine in the market with the highest capacity. But at New Holland we are never satisfied: we constantly look for ways to improve our customers’ productivity and profitability further. With the new CR Revelation range we have achieved this. We improved the control of crop flow, helping our customers increase their productivity; we increased capacity and residue management performance. And with the new styling we improved visibility and serviceability. The CR Revelation reigns supreme in the combine market.” A host of features on the new CR combines increase these machines’ already high capacity and productivity even further, while maintaining the remarkably low grain crackage or reducing it even more. The new cab-controlled remote adjustable rotor vanes, with infinitely variable position between slow and fast, result in class leading crop flow control and power efficiency gains. This feature, available as an option

on the four 22” models at the top of the range, delivers higher productivity and capacity. The in-cab concave reset contributes to increasing the combine’s productivity, dramatically reducing downtime in case of a concave breakaway. This feature makes resetting the concave very easy and fast: the operator just empties rotors, stops the combine, rearms the concaves automatically and resumes harvest, saving the 20-30 minutes that doing the operation manually would require. These features, together with other improvements that include higher rotor covers on the two smaller 17” models, the deep cut DFR and the power upgrade, deliver an increase in the CR combine’s productivity of up to 10%.

Order your FARMING SCOTLAND MAGAZINE Subscription Form See page 65

WILKS BROTHERS Main dealers in Perthshire for DEUTZ FAHR Combine Harvesters

3ALESs3ERVICEs0ARTS Repairs for a wide range of Agricultural Machinery Murthly, Perthshire, PH1 4HG Tel: 01738 710381 Fax: 01738 710581


IN THE BEGINNING Q1) Where were you born? Technically Bellshill (according to my passport) but was brought up on a smallholding near Allanton in Lanarkshire in the house my grandfather built. Q2) What is your earliest memory? Chickens in the kitchen loft and sitting the bullock’s back for a “hurl” Q3) How would you describe your childhood upbringing? Spent lots of time making our on amusement with the local farm kids as we were 2 miles from the nearest main road. Grew up with my brother then later my sister came along. Happy days although chores first and fun later. Telly only had two channels and we were only allowed to watch one of them! Q4) How was school for you? Allanton Primary School was good. Didn’t have a “best friend” due to the distance from the village but got on with everyone and loved sport in particular. Trained with the football team but girls didn’t play in matches in the 60’s. Captain of the netball team. Hated swimming…still do! Was pretty average until 11 Plus when I aced it and headed to the top class at Calderhead High School Shotts. Ended up in classes with no one I knew and felt very lost for a while. Captained the netball team. Worked hard and left after 2nd year to move to the new Garrion Academy near Overton. Loved my schooling here. Gran was the dinner lady so didn’t need to queue for the chips! Had to learn to play hockey as no netball team. Left with 3 Higher and 8 O grades. MOVING ON Q5) What were you into during your teenage years? I bought my first pony when I was 12 with my National Savings certificates. She cost me £25 and was called Cherry. Have had a Welsh Pony ever since until my last one died two years ago. Morningside Boys Brigade till I was 18! I kid you not. I led the marching team and refereed the football on a Saturday. There 28

THE INTERVIEW up close & personal

Your Name: Fiona Sloan Your job title: Currently, Journalist, Stand Manager, Tour Guide, Web designer Company name: Field Farms Tours, Pedigree Farmer Web Design and Texel Sheep Society What you do for the company? Promotions work under my own name. Trade stand Manager for Texel Sheep Society, Tour Manager/Leader for Field Farm Tours Sales and Promotion for Pedigree Farmer Web Design

Secretary Lochar Water committee (making sure the ditches were clean!) Secretary Bluefaced Leicester Sheep Breeders (17 years) Secretary Black Welsh Mountain Sheep Breeders Administrator Blue Texel Sheep Breeders (worst job ever!!) UK Commercial Manager Simmental UK. Vice Chair Promotion World Simmental Federation. Tattie Grader Cleaner in a small block of flats at weekend (to save up for a pair of Dubary boots for my daughter as a surprise for her Christmas) Set up DVD promotions in local supermarkets. Freelance Journalist GROWING UP Q9) What was your first car? Blue Triumph Herald Estate followed by a Blue and Yellow hand painted Simca Van with curtains. Q10) Be honest now, did you pass your test first time? YES I DID!!!! Q11) Can you remember your first love or passion? Apart from my pony it was Jim Murphy. We went to ballroom dancing together on a Tuesday after school and he smelled great! Johnstone’s Baby Powder I think) We were rubbish though and never won anything.

Right, Fiona Sloan with daughter Kirsty

just weren’t enough girls in the village to have a Girls’ Brigade as well! Rose to the heady ranks of second lieutenant. Joined Carluke Young Farmers in 1978 (after I finished my exams…deal with my father) and did everything! Loved speechmaking and captained the netball team. Sung in a girl trio group and did the concerts. Loved it…still do. Born show off with a microphone on a stage. Q6) Who was the first influence in your life? Mrs Skea my primary 1 teacher. Q7) College, University or straight into work? All the above! Went to work in The Clydesdale Bank Law department

straight from school and they sent me straight to Glasgow Technical College the next day (now Caledonian University) Did day release for three years, qualifying as a banker and specialising in securities, liquidations and receiverships. Loved my job in Glasgow, married and moved into Branch Banking for five very boring years (The marriage lasted 18) Q8) Any unusual working experiences from those early years? Did the usual summer in the stables but mostly dad put us to work on the farm to keep us from getting bored!! Since starting work however, I’ve had quite a few “experiences”.

LIFE & LEISURE Q12) Do you have a talent that you would like to share with us? I sing! I’ve sung since I was a wee child in church and have sung in a couple of groups over the years… none anyone would remember! I sing with The Farmers and Farmers Wives Choir (all 150 of us) we practise on a Sunday at Lanark. I love Burns and Burns Suppers’ but I’ll sing pretty much anywhere. I was singing on the top of some pallets up a hill in Islay yesterday! Q13) Away from work, how do you like to relax? I’ve been a single mum since Kirsty was four and she is still my favourite way to relax. I’m lucky to stay in a beautiful village on

THE INTERVIEW the coast and I love relaxing in my garden with Kirsty and my partner Kenny. I have collie dog which I adore and she is my “baby”. I travel a lot with work so home is my favourite relaxation with Kenny and all of our kids and dogs. My favourite night out would be a concert. Anything from Nickelback to Timm McGraw or Skippinish is fine with me! Q14) How is life today for you? Life is great!! I’ve survived cancer for 20 years thanks to a wonderful team at The Beatson who still care for me I have the best child and dog in the world… oh, and partner! Lol I love where I live and work. Coming through Cancer, Foot and Mouth and Depression has made me stronger and I thank God for his guidance. Q15) What is the best advice you have given and would like to pass on to our readers? Treat others as you would like to be treated. Always be humble and kind and always take the road less travelled! Anyone worth your tears …won’t make you cry! Look back and regret doing something never regret NOT doing it. INTO BUSINESS Q16) Your current job, can you tell us a little more about what you do? I rarely say no to any job. I work hard for my clients. I help farmers set up their own websites to promote and sell their stock. We run websites for all the main agricultural organisations and it s great to start with a blank sheet of paper and end up with a working website. I do the trade stand promotion for Texel Sheep. My father was a founder member and we have had them since 1974. I lost everything to Foot and Mouth in 2001 and didn’t have the heart to put them back on so I’ve kept in touch over the years and am also Secretary of Solway and Tyne Texel Breeders Club. I’ve been a tour guide and tour leader for ten years for Field Farm Tours and I love it!

I take inward groups from New Zealand, Australia, Canada and America around the UK farming areas meeting the farmers and agricultural businesses. Once a year I take a group of UK farmers on a study tour overseas and have visited some amazing places, including, Uruguay, Brazil, Ecuador, The Galapagos Islands, Canada, Vietnam, Cambodia, Italy, Tanzania and later this year to Argentina for the first time. Next years planned visits are The Serengeti and The United Arab Emirates. Come with me any time!! Q17) Is there a ‘dream job’ out there waiting for you? No idea! I love what I do and wouldn’t swap it for the world. Let’s see where the next sentence which begins …Fiona would you like to….? And see where it takes me. I always follow the work and not the money so poor but happy. LAST THOUGHTS Q18) If there was a single person (alive or dead) you would love to meet? Stephen Fry! He makes mental health “normal” and encouraged all of us to admit we have a problem and others to help. Q19) And finally, is there one thing in the world you would like to change? Mobile phones!!! They should only be able to text or phone. They should automatically shut off as soon as you get in a car! Really makes me mad to see people doing 90 in the fast lane or 60 in the middle lane of a motorway while texting!! YOU ARE GOING TO KILL SOMEONE!!!! Who cares where you are or what you are having for dinner or if you’ve just hung your washing out! Get off your backside and drive or walk to your friend’s house and have a proper conversation and if it is over a nice glass of wine all the better!! Oh and take your Hi Viz jacket to walk back with and leave your car till tomorrow. The exercise will do you good!

Supporting crofting in Scotland By Rural Economy Secretary Fergus Ewing This is an interesting time for crofting in Scotland: the impending arrival of Brexit presents them, along with farmers with the greatest threat to the sector in a generation but, more positively, there are changes afoot in improving the regulatory and statutory framework for crofting. Underpinning that change is a commitment from the Scottish Government to ensure that crofting doesn’t simply become a relic of our past. Crofting makes a vital contribution to the rural economy, and to the sustainability of remote rural communities in particular. “Along with the EU, we provide more than £500 million annually of support for farmers and crofters under the Common Agricultural Policy across Scotland, which includes the Scottish Suckler Beef Support Scheme, Less Favoured Area Support Scheme and targeted support for crofters. Earlier this month I announced the award of £300,000 to nine crofters across rural Scotland, through our Croft House Grant Scheme, to provide assistance in building new croft houses, or improving the standard of existing ones. Since the start of 2007, over 900 other crofts have similarly benefitted from the scheme, with over £18 million awarded in grants. That has undoubtedly helped to retain crofters to the sector, and in some cases attract new people – which is one of the biggest challenges. Of course we also provide a significant level of financial support to crofters through our Crofting Agricultural Grant Scheme, which helps crofters to sustain their businesses and make improvements to their crofts. That funding can be used for capital projects or for the establishment of Common Grazings Committees, which

then helps with the management and maintenance of common grazing areas. The modernisation of current legislation is also a subject which crofters are understandably concerned about. Most agree that current legislation is complex and lacking in transparency, having been developed on a ‘piecemeal’ basis over nearly 150 years. That’s why the Scottish Government launched a public consultation last year on what might be usefully changed through legislative reform. The consultation received many responses, which made for interesting reading and highlighted the scale of the challenge ahead. After careful consideration it was apparent to me that there was no consensus that would allow me to decide on specific pieces of legislative reform, or the best legislative approach to take. The solution, which has widespread support amongst crofting stakeholders was a two-phase approach to legislative reform, with a shorter term, initial phase focussing on delivering changes which carry widespread support, resulting in practical, everyday improvements to the lives of crofters, and which I anticipate will result in a Bill in this parliamentary session The second phase will focus on longer-term solutions to the more complex and challenging issues facing crofters, which I would foresee being delivered in a future parliamentary session.. So the Scottish Government is taking the initiative to ensure that crofters are valued and encourage to keep doing what they do, in delivering low-intensity, high nature-value agriculture – improving habitats, delivering economic benefits, and attracting tourism in the process.

The Isle of Man A small island with a big heart

WORLD FARMING Anyone who has travelled to The Isle of Man, would be unaware that it is technically a foreign country, until you switch on your mobile phone! Most of us know the island as the home of the internationally renowned TT races but there is a wealth of agriculture and tourism, which run alongside one another, on an island which doubles its 80,000 population for one week of the year during race week. Sitting in the middle of the Irish Sea, from where you can see Scotland, England, Wales and Northern Ireland, it is unique in many ways and has an agricultural system similar to that of the UK but with much closer workings with its own government. With an income tax rate of 10%, a top rate of tax of 20% and no business tax, it is easy to see why large overseas corporations and wealthy individuals have, in the past, flocked to register on the Island, which is only 32 miles long and 14 miles wide and has 42 Ferarris in situ. Most of the farms are exposed to the sea in some way and the blast of the salty coastal winds can turn grass blue overnight. Despite a rainfall of around 65 inches a year, the land is free draining and only two weeks of hot weather sees it start to burn up. Any arable ground is used for growing feed or sent to the local mill to make flour. There are 32 dairy farms on the island, mostly family units, 30

working in a cooperative with Isle of Man Creamery, which not only handles all of the milk but also produces its own butter and cheese, does home and overseas promotion on its products and continues the tradition of door step deliveries for customers. There is one small livestock market, which runs when there are enough sellers to attract the buyers, with the office doubling as the canteen on market days. As in most Islands off the British Isles, the growing season is short

By Fiona Sloan

and sheep and cattle graze the silage and hay fields throughout the winter so weather and timing is essential for the island crops. The Manx government, The House of Keys, is well set to understand the agricultural industry as many of its members and speakers are part of the farming community. The only slaughterhouse on the island, is owned by the government and leased. This has proved very divisive, with prices being kept low due to the lack of competition

and farmers are willing to pay £150 per head to transport cattle to the UK to get a better price for their stock. Following a backlash from the farmers, the government has become involved in the running of the abattoir and put new directors in place. According to a government spokesman “since the new board have been in place, they have turned around the fortunes of the abattoir in six weeks and have one of the best abattoirs in Europe!” As they are currently unable to

WORLD FARMING produce any figures on either the throughput or prices being paid, one would have to rely more on the farmers opinion on this one. The government do however encourage farmers to diversify and grow their businesses, by

underwriting new or artisan crops like Rye and Quinoa. Many of the islands families have been there for many generations and while keen to travel, the new generation return to embrace the opportunities that

diversification brings and there is a thriving farm tourism and artisan food industry, producing everything from rhubarb wine to goat’s cheese. No one has all their eggs in one basket, avoiding relying on one enterprise.

Tourism is a huge part of island income and farm tourism opportunities bring a seasonal boost, without encroaching on traditional farming, which maintains the countryside for the tourists.

Into Africa

SRUC researchers helping Guinea-Bissau farmers to diversify Researchers from Scotland’s Rural College (SRUC) have recently returned from GuineaBissau in Western Africa to assist in building networking and knowledge transfer centres between international researchers. Funded by the Global Challenges Research Fund and the Academy of Medical Science, the goal is to facilitate the development of a project proposal, which addresses the needs of developing countries with research centres, such as SRUC and University JeanPiaget Bissau.

Being heavily reliant on cashew cultivation as its main source of exports, Guinea-Bissau is in need of a diversification strategy. By amending current practices, the agriculture sector could mitigate risk of the dependency on cashews, as well as accommodate sustainability for nutrition and long-term planning. SRUC staff, Professor Andrew Barnes and Joana Ferrier, from the Land Economy and Environment Research Group, along with Henry Creissen, from the Crop and Soil Systems Group, joined

researchers from the University of Lisbon to form an integrated research team. The team travelled around Guinea-Bissau to visit a number of managed and semi-wild cashew plantations, which allowed the team to speak with stakeholders along the cashew supply chain. Prof Barnes said: “We are excited to be involved in this work, which will allow us, through our research and educational capacity, to support the development of the agricultural economy of GuineaBissau.”

At the end of their week-long visit, the research team organised a workshop to address the potential for diversification and options to increase resilience of the cashew system already in place. Along the way, the team delivered a range of SRUC materials, including visual soil assessment guides and a demonstration of the potential to use digital microscopes in the field to identify pests and diseases in the cashew crop. The team will revisit Guinea-Bissau at the end of the rainy season in October to understand the seasonal effects on food security.


environment Project investigates using alternatives to potentially-damaging plastic mulch in farming Scientists are investigating alternatives to using potentiallydamaging plastic soil mulch currently favoured by farmers and gardeners. The team at Coventry University’s Centre for Agroecology, Water and Resilience are leading a major Europe-wide research project examining the use of some of the most controversial products in organic farming, including plastics, antibiotics, fertilisers containing animal products and copper. They will be analysing how plastic mulch (made from fossil fuels) affects the soil and plants it touches, what more environmentally-friendly alternatives there are to it and the impact that these could have on land and crops. Plastic mulch is widely used in large-scale vegetable growing, with millions of acres of farmland covered with it worldwide every year. It’s cheap to make, but there are fears that the plastic can accumulate in the soil, as it’s expensive and difficult to remove it, and that this can lead to environmental problems. It may also affect biodiversity and contaminate plants, soil and water with plastic micro-particles or molecules from the degradation of fossil-fuel based products. The Coventry team hope the results of their research will help to phase-out all fossil-fuel derived plastic in European agriculture and replace them with renewable and fully degradable alternatives. The research project, called Organic-PLUS, will also investigate a series of other contentious subjects in organic and conventional farming. These include: - Minimising and phasing-out antibiotics use in livestock farming. - Looking at the current use and future potential for vegan fertilisers, based on plants (e.g. beans), rather than using animal by-products. 32

- Minimising and phasing-out the use of copper in organic farming, especially in Mediterranean countries and greenhouse crops. - Phasing out peat use in growing media across Europe The project will also involve a large online survey, to be launched in the next couple of months, aiming to ask 15,000 people in seven countries what issues they are concerned about within organic farming. The results will influence how the project develops and if it expands its scope to include other topics of public concern. The four-year 4.1 million Euro project, funded by the EU’s Horizon 2020 scheme, involves 24 different partners from 12 different countries across Europe including UK, Poland, France, Italy, Spain, Germany, Turkey and Norway. Dr Ulrich Schmutz, who is leading the project for CAWR, said: “All the topics examined in this project are really contentious issues that are of huge public concern. They affect how our land is farmed, how our food is grown, what we eat and also have wide-ranging consequences on the environment and our health. “We have heard a lot about devastating impact plastic is having on our oceans and their wildlife, but there’s also a potentially massive problem with plastic building up in soils too. “It’s vitally important we understand more about how dangerous it can be and find safe and suitable alternatives. These microplastics in soils may seem very small scale, but the accumulation over time and across the whole of Europe and the inland seas around it can be very large. The fear is that micro-plastic or molecules of plastic degradation get into the soil, ground water, animal feed and even human consumption. That is something we need to research in detail and invest in food and product which lead the way out of this.”

Cover Crops Sowing a cover crop mixture from a range of seeds such as mustard, radish, vetch, clover, forage oat or rye post harvest can protect bare soil from erosion, prevent loss of nutrients through leaching and have beneficial effects on soil structure and also boost soil life. They can be used by farmers to meet their greening requirements under the Basic Payment Scheme. With so many positive benefits to the soil and the wider environment its little wonder the practice is being taken up by increasing numbers of farmers south of the Border, but are they appropriate for Scottish conditions? There are a number of factors that Scottish farmers need to consider before diving in to post harvest cover crops.

benefits. If you are further north e.g. Aberdeenshire or the field is at altitude or north facing you need to be two weeks earlier. If delayed sow a mixture of larger seeds such a triticale, barley, oats or rye to ensure you get establishment and crop cover. s .UTRITION n #ROPS WILL produce more biomass above and below the ground the more fertile the site. If the site has a low nutrient status consider apply a fertiliser or organic manure such as slurry, digestate or muck. s 2OTATION&ACTORSn-USTARD will establish quickly, but it will also increase the incidence of root disease Clubroot, so needs to be excluded if other brassica crops are grown in the rotation.

s 4IMING )DEALLYACOVERCROP needs to be sown in August which means following oilseed rape, winter barley and on occasion after spring barley.

s 0ESTS n 3LUGS CAN BE A real problem and can wipe out emerging seedlings and continue to graze on established plants.

s $ELAYED (ARVEST 3MALL seeds will struggle to establish and grow when sown after the 2nd week of September resulting in all the cost and few of the

Cover crops can and are being growing by farmers in Scotland and consideration of the above will help to reduce the risks and ensure a successful crop.

For more ideas on improving farm efficiency which can in turn reduce the farm carbon footprint, see and find us on Facebook and Twitter @SACFarm4Climate. Farming for a Better Climate is funded by the Scottish Government as part of Scotland’s Farm Advisory Service

People Jim McLaren Presented with Outstanding Achievement Award Quality Meat Scotland chairman Jim McLaren was presented with an outstanding achievement award at the annual Scotland Food and Drink Excellence Awards (Thursday June 7th 2018). Mr McLaren (50) farms over 800 acres in Perthshire and has been chairman of QMS since 2011, after serving as president of NFU Scotland from 2007 to 2011. He is a director of NFU Mutual, has also served on the board of SRUC (Scotland’s Rural College) and is a trustee of The Cameron Trust. Mr McLaren, who is married to Shona and has two sons, two daughters and two step-daughters, was awarded an Honorary Fellowship by SRUC in November 2015 for his “outstanding contributions to Scottish agriculture and the rural economy,” and in 2017, Mr McLaren was further recognised for his commitment to the industry when he was awarded an MBE in Queen’s Birthday Honours List. Along with working in his various industry roles and running his farming business, Mr McLaren also makes time to support the work of charities such as the Royal Highland Education Trust and regularly welcomes local school children to his farm, Dargill near Crieff, to gain a better understanding of where their food comes from. The Scotland Food and Drink Excellence awards recognise businesses and individuals in

Scotland who are leading the way with innovation, enterprise and quality. Over 800 industry professionals were in attendance to congratulate Jim on his award. James Withers, Scotland Food & Drink, Chief Executive, said: “I can think of few more deserving recipients of an outstanding achievement award than Jim. He is a force of nature who has a rare ability to strongly lead but bring people with him at the same time. Whether championing the whole farming community or our world class red meat industry, rural Scotland is in a better place because of his efforts. “Scotland Food & Drink has been a story of collaboration. The organisations Jim has led over the last decade have been central to this partnership way of working and it is making Scotland stand out on the global stage.” Alan Clarke, Chief Executive, Quality Meat Scotland, said: “Jim is a world-class ambassador for the Scottish farming, food and drink industries. His passion and enthusiasm is infectious, and his track record speaks for itself. “Everyone at QMS is so proud of his achievement and delighted that he has been recognised for the outstanding contribution he has made to our industry.” Mr McLaren, who steps down as Chairman of QMS in September following two terms in the post, said he was surprised and delighted to have received the award, sponsored by the Scottish Government.

“For me, working in the agricultural industry, in various roles, has been a huge privilege,” said Mr McLaren “I am enormously proud of our industry, but mainly the people all over Scotland who work day in, day out, dedicating their lives to producing brands such as Scotch

Beef PGI, Scotch Lamb PGI and Specially Selected Pork. “It is the passion, dedication and innovation of those who work in our industry which has resulted in Scotland’s larder earning a global reputation for quality, sustainability and natural excellence.”

Jim and Alan Laidlaw



Reaching the heights There is a wide range of telehandler models to choose from

Bobcat Launches New TL30.70 AGRI Telescopic Loader Bobcat has launched the company’s new TL30.70 AGRI compact telescopic loader for the agricultural industry. The TL30.70 provides a maximum lift capacity of 3 tonne and a maximum lift height of nearly 7 m; the overall width remains at less than 2.1 m even with 24 inch tyres. The new TL30.70 is part of a range of six telescopic loader models from Bobcat covering maximum lifting capacities between 2.6 and 3.8 tonne with lifting heights from 6 to 7 m. Like all the models in the Bobcat

range, the TL30.70 is covered by a three year/3000 hour warranty as standard. There is also the option of extending the warranty to five years/5000 hours. They are all designed and manufactured in France (Brittany) at the Bobcat factory in Pontchâteau. The new TL30.70 is ideal for poultry and goat farms but also for mixed farming, particularly on small and medium sized crop, livestock and dairy farms. In Europe, the segment for 7 m lifting height telescopic loaders represents more than two


AGRICULTURAL SERVICES LTD. Main Dealers for Merlo Telehandlers



D-K-R AGRICULTURAL SERVICES LTD. Westfield, Coulter, Biggar, Lanarkshire ML12 6HN 4ELs&!8 E-Mail: dkrcoulter@hotmail-com 34


TELEHANDLERS thirds of the farming market. The TL30.70 provides an excellent compact and cost-effective alternative to larger 7 m models, especially where working spaces are tight and increased manoeuvrability is required. In

addition, performance is not compromised in the compact TL30.70, which offers a powerful hydraulic system with flow sharing to combine several fast boom movements simultaneously for increased productivity.

The Case IH Farmlift 742

Case IH has always catered for the needs of every type of farm and the Farmlift line of telescopic loaders continues that tradition. With a range of six models, with lift capacities from 2,500 to 4,200kg and a maximum lift height of 9.1m, Farmlift machines are rugged, reliable and comfortable. When there is grain to be loaded, bags to be shifted, bales to be stacked or muck to be moved, the Case IH Farmlift 742 telescopic loader is designed to boost productivity on farm. With a fuel efficient four-cylinder engine rated at 133hp (max 145hp) (fundamentally the same engine used in the Maxxum ActiveDrive 8

- the most fuel efficient 4-cylinder tractor ever tested) and a lift capacity of 4.2 tonnes to a height of 7m, the Farmlift 742 is equipped with a high capacity 140l/min hydraulic pump for faster response and cycle times. The machine has a 6x3 Autoshift transmission with a shuttle switch integrated into the joystick but can also be specified with a traditional shuttle on the left side of the steering column for operators that prefer that approach. The Farmlift 742 is equipped with a cab with excellent ergonomics for comfortable, safe operation and has LED lights to improve illumination when working early or late in the day.

CLAAS launch new SCORPION telehandlers The well proven SCORPION models from CLAAS have been raising the bar in terms of telehandler technology for many years. CLAAS has now introduced a completely new SCORPION series, which has been developed in cooperation with Liebherr. The new SCORPION models offer greater handling performance, thanks to increased lifting capacity and new advanced driverassistance systems, improved

driver comfort and efficiency, along with improved safety and reliability. These benefits stem from a range of new features, such as DYNAMIC POWER for engine management, the new SMART LOADING driverassistance system for fine control of the working hydraulics and overload protection, a fully automatic parking brake, controlled crab steering as a fourth steering option and an allnew cab configuration.

TELEHANDLERS All new SCORPION models boast improved working hydraulics and increased lifting capacity of 3.2 to 5.6t, enabling optimal handling performance and productivity, thanks to quick cycle times. From December 2018, an additional SCORPION model will be available to

meet the highest handling performance demands, with a 6.0t lifting capacity and 9.0 m lifting height. Another major improvement in the new series is the high-performance drive, which guarantees particularly convenient and precise manoeuvring.

sturdiness with the lifting height of a telehandler. Fitted with a number of innovative features, the telehandlers are reliable machines for various tasks around your farm. Since January 2018, the machines are equipped with even more innovative details: a new simple operating concept allowing the operator to

choose hydraulic responsiveness and the transmission system “ecospeedPRO” for increased tractive force and Eco driving are just a few of these. As a standard, all models are equipped with the driver assistance system Smart Handling with three functional modes ensuring efficient material handling on the farm.

Kramer offers telehandlers for all agricultural requirements In the early years of more than the 90-year company history, KramerWerke GmbH quickly made a name for itself as a manufacturer of tractors. Thanks to the company’s continuous success, materials handlers have been sold in the UK into agriculture since the 1980s. Under its traditional brand name Kramer, the company designs and produces wheel

loaders, tele-wheel loaders and telehandlers for agriculture with great maneuverability, off-road capability and efficiency. Kramer now offers its customers a wide range of telehandlers with a stacking height of between 6 and 9 meters. Two new models are being introduced this year, KT407 & KT429. All models combine a wheel loader’s

Massey Ferguson introduce their New Generation MF TH Series Massey Ferguson announced its new MF TH Telehandler Series which made its French debut at the SIMA Show earlier this year. The MF TH Telehandler range includes models to meet all requirements from the semicompact MF TH.6030, ideal for work in restricted spaces, through to the high capacity MF TH.7038 that can lift the heaviest high density bales. All offer fast and efficient cycles for loading as well as the power to tow a loaded trailer. The four new generation models offer lift capacities from 3t to 3.8t with lift heights from 6m to 7m. All are equipped with a hydrostatic transmission and are 36

powered by a 3.4 litre four-cylinder Doosan engine, which delivers 100hp on the MF TH.6030 and MF TH.7035 and 130hp on the MF TH.6534 and MF TH.7038. All models have three selectable steering modes, two-wheel steer, four-wheel steer and crab-steer to provide optimum manoeuvrability in all operating conditions. “This new MF TH Telehandler Series takes our continuous improvement programme to an ever greater level,” says Campbell Scott, Massey Ferguson Director Marketing Services. “The new features on our renowned machines now deliver customers even higher performance, which

allow them to carry out their work in more comfort, with greater

productivity costs.”





25th Anniversary Merlo Models The Ultra Compact P27.6 has been developed as a high performance, compact telehandler. The Plus and Top versions are specifically designed for the Agricultural sector and are suited for farms with restricted access of under 2 metre by 2 metre. The P27.6 is a perfect solution for pig & poultry units and or as a secondary telehandler on farm.

The P27.6 boasts an impressive 2.7 tonnes lift capacity and 6.1 metre maximum placement height. The P27.6 includes the same spacious cab as its larger counterparts; offering easy access, impressive space and visibility with great comfort. All models include hydrostatic transmission as standard for precision of drive at a max speed of 40km/h.

metres. The range benefits from in-house design and construction,

and is set to offer the world’s medium and large scale livestock

New Hollands’ new generation LM telehandler New Holland has completely redesigned the heavy duty six to nine metre LM range of telehandlers, which now delivers substantially improved performance together with


premium operator comfort. The five model range features the LM 6.32, LM 6.35 Elite, LM 7.35, LM 7.42 Elite and LM 9.35 models, can lift up to 4,200kg and has a maximum lift height of 9.1

TELEHANDLERS farmers, large arable operations and contractors, high performance material handling capabilities. The new range replaces the existing LM5040, LM5060 and LM5080 models. In order to highlight this,

the LM range benefits from New Holland’s evolution in product numbering. The first digit indicates the maximum lift height in metres, and the second two numbers denote the maximum lift capacity

in hundreds of kilos. “The new LM range is the fruit of extensive customer consultation and the LM has been redesigned from the ground up.” Stated Luca Mainardi, Head of Tractor, Telehandler

and Precision Farming Product Management . “We have combined impressive output in terms of lift capacities and power with a bestin-class operator experience and class-leading visibility.

The Schäffer 8620 T The 8620 T succeeds Schäffer’s very successful 8610 T telescopic wheel loader. With a wealth of options, including two different motor options, speeds and heights, it provides a tailored solution for larger farms, biogas plants and agricultural contractors. A revised drive concept means the 8620 T delivers on efficiency too. The 8620 T has two engine options: a 75 kW/102 hp or 90 kW/122 hp Deutz engine. Both engines meet the Tier IV final emissions standard without the need for a maintenanceintensive diesel particulate filter - a major advantage when it comes to operating costs. The standard driving speed is 20 km/h. The loader is also available with a maximum

speed of 40 km/h - particularly advantageous for use outside the yard. An additional option allows the telescopic wheel loader to be used as a towing vehicle with a permissible towing capacity of up to 12 tonnes. The drive concept of the 8620 T is also new: HTF (High Traction Force) and SPT (Schäffer Power Transmission) are standard equipment even with the smaller motor. HTF is an automatic thrust control system that allows the loader to deliver the highest thrust, even in high gear. This means manual downshifting is not necessary when driving uphill or into a pile. SPT is the electronically controlled drive from Schäffer. It leads to a

significant increase in machine efficiency, improved agility and offers the driver a number of new possibilities, including cruise control to keep the machine at a

constant driving speed regardless of engine speed, which is particularly advantageous when working with feed dosing devices, straw distributors, mulchers or brooms.



MiAlgae on track to shake up food industry after £500,000 investment MiAlgae, a student-launched startup that aims to revolutionise the animal and fish feed industries with microalgae made from the co-products of whisky, has received £500,000 from investors. The company, founded by Douglas Martin while a masters student at the University of Edinburgh in 2015-16, grows algae rich in omega-3 and other nutrients using co-products from the whisky distillation process. The microalgae produced can be used as a raw material for agricultural food products, with the company initially targeting the aquaculture industry, whose future growth is predicted to require new sources of feed. The investment, in equal shares from Equity Gap, the Scottish Investment Bank, the investment arm of Scotland’s enterprise agencies, and the University’s venture fund Old College Capital, will enable the company to expand its team and build a pilot plant for its technology at a whisky distillery. “This is a huge deal for us,” said Martin. “This investment will fund the initial scale-up steps and de-risk our commercial facility. It certainly sets us on track to achieve our ambitions.” The £500,000 seed investment in MiAlgae follows a series of competition and funding successes. Martin obtained a Smart: Scotland grant in 2017, has progressed through the EU’s three-stage Climate-KIC Accelerator programme hosted at the Edinburgh Centre for Carbon Innovation, has had competition success including Scottish EDGE Young EDGE and Innovate UK, and was recently named Shell LiveWIRE 40

Young Entrepreneur of the Year. Martin recently pitched at the final of the 2018 Scottish EDGE competition with the chance of being awarded an additional £100k of funding for the company – the awards ceremony for the competition will be held on 14 June. Kerry Sharp, head of the Scottish Investment Bank, commented: “This is an exciting new equity investment for Scottish Enterprise into a company that has utilised the circular economy to make an innovative and valuable product. The funding round will also allow high value R&D employment opportunities to be created in rural Scotland with the roll out of the new pilot plant. “A forward thinking, ambitious company, Scottish Enterprise has worked with MiAlgae since its very early stages of development helping it with innovation and financial readiness support, including a By Design grant which helped with the cost analysis of the pilot plant. I’d like to congratulate the team in securing this latest round of funding and look forward to continue working with Douglas and his team as they continue along their exciting growth journey.” Martin has been supported by LAUNCH.ed, the University’s service for student entrepreneurs, since January 2016 when he was studying MSC Synthetic Biology and Biotechnology. LAUNCH.ed has helped him to develop and launch his business, apply and pitch for grants and competitions, and connect with mentors and investors. Dr George Baxter, Chief Executive Officer of Edinburgh

Douglas Martin

Innovations, the University’s industry engagement service, which manages LAUNCH. ed, said: “It’s wonderful to see investors show confidence in Douglas and MiAlgae. The innovation of his process and the way it will help the environment have great potential. His journey shows what is possible for our entrepreneurial students, and we’re delighted to see MiAlgae reach this important milestone.” Fraser Lusty, Director at Business Angel Group Equity Gap, added: “We’re delighted to lead the first scale round for MiAlgae alongside OCC and SIB. Douglas is an exceptional talent and has made remarkable progress in a novel solution for sustainable food production. We

look forward to supporting him and the company through this exciting next phase.” Martin will be looking to expand the company’s production capacity 30-fold and will be expanding his team of two, to reach five. Aquaculture is worth £1.8 billion a year to the Scottish economy, according to latest Scottish Government figures, but Martin’s ambition does not stop with aquaculture or Scotland. “We’re looking at multiple industries in the supply side, multiple industries at the product side, then diversification into multiple products beyond feeds,” said Martin. “There are lots of things we can do with our products.”

Beatha an eilean

Clàr Chroitean (ROC) Air-loidhne An robh fios agad gun urrainn dhut fiosrachadh mun chroit agad fhaotainn air-loidhne?

Is e liosta poblach de chroitean a th’ ann an ROC anns a bheil fiosrachadh bunasach mun chroit agus na daoine co-cheangailte ris. Tha dìreach còrr air 20,500 croit clàraichte air ROC a’ Choimisein le timcheall air 72% dhiubh air an gabhail agus an còrr ann an seilbh. Is e seo a’ chiad uair a tha an ROC air a bhith fosgailte don phoball, ach chan eil fiosrachadh ann mu chrìochan no mapaichean airson croitean oir tha iad sin air an cumail le Clàran na h-Alba. Thuirt an t-Àrd-Oifigear, Bill Barron, “B’ e prìomh cheum air adhart don Choimisean a bh’ ann am foillseachadh an ROC Air-loidhne. Tha na mìltean de dh’innteartan sa Chlàr Chroitean, a’ mìneachadh nithean leithid

ainm, àite, agus meud gach croit fa leth. Gach bliadhna, bidh sinn a’ faighinn mìltean de cheistean mu fhiosrachadh a tha glèidhte air a’ Chlàr, mar sin bheir cothrom poblach air an fhiosrachadh feabhas mòr air an t-seirbheis a th’ againn do ar teachdaichean. Bidh am fiosrachadh a tha ri fhaotainn tron Chlàr Air-loidhne ga ùrachadh gach latha agus air a thogail air rè

ùine gus nithean mar stiùireadh air di-chroiteadh agus òrdughan roinnidh a ghabhail a-steach.” Lean an Neach-gairm, Rod Mackenzie ag ràdh, “Ged bu choir cothrom poblach air a’ Chlàr Chroitean a bhith thar luach do chroitearan, uachdarain agus luchd-lagha, feumaidh sinn cuimhneachadh nach eil am fiosrachadh anns a’ Chlàr ach cho

math agus a nì iad e. Dh’iarradh sinn air daoine a dhol air-loidhne agus coimhead ris a’ mhionfhiosrachadh mun chroit aca, agus ma tha fiosrachadh sam bith ann nach eil iad a’ meas ceart, fios a chur chun a’ Choimisein air post-d gu gus an gabh na clàran an sgrùdadh agus an ùrachadh ma bhios sin riatanach.” Tha an Clàr Chroitean Airloidhne ri fhaotainn air an làrachlìn againn aig www.crofting. On chiad fhoillseachadh san Lùnastal 2017 chaidh còrr air 49,000 sgrùdadh a dhèanamh air an ROC agus còrr air 10,000 lethbhreac innteartan a chlòbhualadh bhon làraich. 41


Farming life in the heart of the city 3rd & 4th August

For two days every year, Perth has the unique distinction of hosting Scotland’s only agricultural show to be held in the centre of a city. Now in its 156th year, Perth Show brings the country to the town in an agriculture showcase that compares with the best. And organisers are promising that 2018 will offer “something for everyone” in a two-day programme of agriculture, equestrian, food and fun highlights guaranteed to be real crowd pleasers. This year, the popular show now the third largest of its type in Scotland - will be held on Friday 3rd and Saturday 4th August. Attractions include one of the finest line-ups of would-be champion horses, donkeys, goats, cattle and sheep. Over 1,200 head of livestock will compete in around 340 classes


while other competitors vie for prizes in cooking and handcraft. And throughout the two days, trade stands, sideshows, entertainment, activities, shopping, music and parades all add to the vibrancy of this annual “must see” on the Perthshire events calendar. Every year, organisers pull yet another special attraction out of the hat and 2018 will be no different. Show secretary Neil Forbes highlighted two new attractions. “Each year we play host to Private Driving classes and they prove a huge draw for the public,” he said, “but they have never enjoyed centre stage despite the huge amount of work and effort that goes into preparing the teams and carriages for the competition classes.

“This August we plan to turn the spotlight firmly on these amazing entrants - which range from donkey-drawn gigs to four horses in harness pulling beautiful carriages containing handlers in immaculate turnout.” Perth Show commentators will guide spectators through the intricate moves and skills of there different class competitors as they parade Saturday’s main showing. “They deserve a key spot in the showcase programme and we’re sure the public will love the higher profile we are giving them - they’re a great favourite with all ages,” added Neil. Another great crowd pleaser making a welcome return to Perth Show this year is the Pony Club Games - heart-stopping daredevil riding by youngsters on their plucky ponies as they race across the show ground competing in a variety of speed and agility challenges. “We last held Pony Club Games around six years ago,” explained Neil, but the demand

and the will is there to resurrect what is a really exciting event.” Around half a dozen clubs from across Scotland are set to compete in the edge-of-your-seat action. Firm favourites making a welcome return to the Perth Show include the Perthshire On A Plate food festival which draws thousands to the food and drink pavilion for a two-day programme featuring cookery demonstrations by celebrity and local chefs at the Food Theatre, food and drink producers offering tastings and sales in the produce marquee and chefs from local restaurants offering taster-size portions from several local eateries in the pop-up dining area. This year’s headliners at Perthshire On A Plate - supported by Sodexo and Quality Meat Scotland - are Irish favourite celebrity chef Paul Rankin on the Friday and Scotland’s own Jacqueline O’Donnell heading up the Saturday line-up. Perth Show is also delighted to host the Scottish regional judging of the Delicious Magazine Produce

PERTH SHOW 2018 Awards 2018 at the dedicated Fisher & Paykel award winning home appliance kitchen within the Perthshire On A Plate food and drink pavilion. A team of expert judges will be overseen by Valentina Harris, chef, broadcaster, cookery teacher and champion of small producers. They will be faced with tasting the very best of produce from across the whole of Scotland, across nine different categories. The heavy horse turnouts always prove one of the Show’s most popular and spectacular attractions. And this year wellknown Clydesdale expert Dick Dargie from Errol will host a display of harnesses and demonstrate the art of creating impressive tail, mane and harness decorations. And showing how the lower end of these magnificent creatures is cared for will be national team manager Jim Balfour from Tealing and the Scottish Farrier Team. The former World Championship winning team will be at the South Inch spectacular to stage a series of demonstrations for the public. Other rural skills such as sheep shearing, beekeeping, crook making and wool spinning will also feature in the two-day programme as townsfolk join their country cousins to marvel at these traditional experts. Perth Show always has an eye on the next generation and is delighted to welcome back the Royal Highland Education Trust (RHET). Throughout the two days, RHET will offer a range of handson activities for children including a lambing simulator, an oilseed

rape press and the ever-popular Daisy – the milking cow. RHET will also host the Scottish Beekeepers Association with their live observation hive and craft activities. And there ever-popular pet show allows youngsters to earn rosettes for their family favourites expect everything from donkeys to lizards! Show Chairman - Perthshire livestock farmer John Ritchie - is looking forward to showcasing the area’s wealth of agricultural technology, heritage and skills. “Many people don’t realise the vital link between agriculture and the food for their families,” he said. “Perth Show literally takes visitors through the process from the field to the plate, letting people see how we rear and grow, process and create and finally refine livestock and crops to become the meal they all enjoy. “Visitors will be able to speak to the people who work the land and raise the livestock, those who sell the latest machinery and equipment to carry out that work and the artisan producers and chefs who produce and cook the products from the raw ingredients farmed,” added John. “Perth Show tells the full story.” The work of Perthshire’s farmers and their teams is also celebrated at Perth Show each year through the presentation of Royal Highland Agricultural Society of Scotland Long Service Awards. This year Perth Show will celebrate a unique landmark with local farm worker James Hutchison set to receive a specially minted medal to mark 60 years service at Tainsh Farm, Crieff, where he has

worked since he was 15-years-old and still turns in for a shift. Friday is a day for horse lovers at Perth Show with all-day judging of ponies and horses proudly shown by exhibitors ranging from tots to adults. Then on Saturday, the focus swings to other four-legged creatures. The day starts with the judging of Heavy Horses, Cattle, Sheep, Goats and Donkeys. The morning judging is completed with the Supreme Champions in the Heavy Horse, Cattle, Sheep and Goats classes - all competing for the Champion of Champions Trophy judged this year by Perth Show President David Armstrong. Perth Show presents a vast array of some very beautiful and historic silverware and visitors will be able to view the magnificent trophies on display on the Saturday. The afternoon entertainment commences with the spectacular display of animals in the Grand Parade of show winners. This will be followed by the hugely popular parade of vintage vehicles before Pony Club Games and Private Driving take centre stage. Throughout the two days there will be hundreds of trade stands and exhibitors - as well as the

Perthshire On A Plate Food Festival - to entertain visitors. There are also plenty of stands selling a wide variety of crafts, clothing, produce and other goods to satisfy any shopaholic. Little visitors looking for some entertainment away from the “farmyard” can take advantage of the children’s sideshows and fun rides. And there’s plenty of food and refreshment stops to keep everyone fuelled for a full exciting and entertaining day. “Perth Show attracts thousands of visitors each year,” said Show secretary Neil. “This year’s show will continue to feature many of the traditional aspects of agricultural shows, valued by generations of farmers, as well as the new and exciting visitor attractions. “County agriculture shows are no longer just a get-together for farmers,” said Neil. “We have to offer entertainment for all the family and by diversifying into a food and drink festival, skills demonstrations, show ground entertainment, educational activities and a wealth of agriculture related interests, we can appeal to a much wider audience and truly bring city and country together in a two-day special.”


Farming travel guide Scotland A Land of Plenty - the Scottish Borders Despite being firmly located in Scotland, the Scottish Borders are a very green and pleasant land. The countryside is notably lush, fertile and bounteous. As well as the never-ending greenery, there are sheep in fields as far as the eye can see, which links to one of the region’s most famed attractions, Melrose Abbey. The atmospheric and ruinous abbey was founded in 1136 by Cistercian monks, and the Cistercians were notably successful sheep farmers, tending and buying vast tracts of land in the area. Their wool was sold through the trading ports of northern Europe and, at its peak in the 14th century, Melrose Abbey boasted approximately 15,000 sheep making it one of the the largest flocks in the country. Today Melrose is probably best known as the burial site of Robert the Bruce’s heart. Across the road from the abbey is the National Trust for Scotland’s Harmony Garden, its name suggests that all is naturally balanced in this neck of the woods. And near the town of Peebles, is the equally fruitful Dawyck Botanic Garden. Famed for its arboretum and stunning Himalayan Blue Poppies, nature seems generous and abundant here.

William Lockie


Courtesy of Visit Scotland and Kenny Lam

With Janice Hopper

Melrose Abbey

The land and the sheep are part of a bigger story in the Borders, the story of Scottish textiles. In Hawick, the Borders Textile Towerhouse Museum sums up the story of this illustrious trade. A key display asks the million dollar question, ‘Why the Borders?’ Why did the textile industry succeed here? The answer lies in the quality Border hill sheep, widespread

rural skills, established smallscale commercial production, and powerful rivers to power machinery. Combine this with some Government investment, ambitious businessmen, links to Yorkshire’s textile trade, and the ability and dedication to produce quality products, and the wheels were set in motion. The museum not only covers the history of Scottish textiles, but the processes required to transform raw wool into a covetable garment. Knitting, weaving, machinery, tartan and tweeds are explored, and the museum highlights the inevitable impact of industrialisation on traditional country life. As textile machines came to dominate the trade in the 19th century, life in the great outdoors became a life of hard graft at the mill, leading to protests, marches and reform. Hawick is also globally recognised for its cashmere products, created from imported goat fibres. Whilst there have been attempts to rear the animals for the cashmere market in Scotland, it’s

never truly taken off. Today, if you visit the big names in cashmere, the brands that still produce their garments locally are fiercely proud of the fact. William Lockie stocks a colourful array of Geelong, cashmere, and (for the person who has everything) camel hair jumpers. Johnston’s of Elgin’s visitor centre offers mill tours, and highlights their Merino Lambswool, Peruvian Alpaca fibres, Angora sourced from rabbits, Camel Hair from central Asia, and Cashmere from China and Iran. Visitors are encouraged to handle fistfuls of fibres and compare the texture and quality. Finally, at nearby Hawico, a viewing gallery allows customers to see the mill actually at work. Hawico’s displays also sum of the history of cashmere. It was introduced to the UK in the early 1890s by a Bradford Wool Merchant, Joseph Dawson, who discovered the fibre whilst travelling to India to attend his daughter’s wedding. In 1893 he provided his Scottish Borders customers with samples of this new

Farming travel guide Scotland material, and the reaction to the softness, lightness and exclusivity of this exciting new discovery was the beginning of a new chapter in the region’s history. As well as making fashion statements, the Borders are also rich in literary connections. But the thing about this corner of Scotland is that everything comes back to the land. Sir Walter Scott was renowned for his romantic portrayal of the Scottish countryside, but visit his courtroom in Selkirk, where as SheriffDeputy he dispensed justice for the local community, and you hear the tale of the destitute Tom Purdie. Purdie came before the esteemed

author having poached game to feed his family. It was Scott’s duty to impose a heavy fine on Purdie, which if unpaid would result in a prison sentence. Crestfallen Purdie was resigned to his fate but, instead of ending up behind bars, he received the surprise news that the fine had been discreetly paid. Purdie went in person to thank Scott for his benevolence, and upon doing so was offered a position managing Scott’s sheep farm, Ashestiel. Purdie spent 22 years serving Scott, and a close bond was formed. Sir Walter Scott was an author, a legal man, but also a farmer. He went on to buy land in 1811 and build a fine house.

Today it’s open to the public, and many tourists visit the famous ‘Abbotsford’ to discover more about this literary figure. A second close farming friend of Sir Walter Scott’s was the ‘Ettrick Shepherd’ James Hogg, known today for ‘Confessions of a Justified Sinner’. Despite literary success in adulthood, Hogg experienced a tough farming childhood. His father, a tenant farmer, faced bankruptcy, forcing young James to leave the school-room behind and labour on numerous farms. With his literacy and learning so interrupted it’s remarkable he made a name for himself as a poet and writer. It’s said that Hogg was quite an unrefined figure in literary circles and within Scottish intelligentsia, but this reputation didn’t faze Sir Walter Scott who remained a loyal friend. At the end of his days Scott was laid to rest at the spiritual Dryburgh Abbey - another picturesque stop for any visitor to the Borders. With its reputation for literature, fine abbeys and luxury textiles, the Borders is a rugged yet refined area but, due to its proximity with the English border, it was once a tumultuous region. These struggles are commemorated with

Dining at Cringletie House

‘Common Ridings’. Such events can be traced back to the 13th and 14th centuries when cattle thieving (reiving) was rife, and raids and plundering brought a lawlessness to the land. To combat this, the townspeople would ride their boundaries, or ‘marches’. The ridings carry on today, celebrating a tradition that has its origins in necessity and conflict. The next date in the diary is the Lauder Common Riding taking place on 4 August 2018, and the colourful Hawick Reivers Festival falls in March. From natural beauty and high fashion, to literary connections, sheep farming and complex political history, the Borders does seem to have it all. Where to Stay Cringletie House near Peebles is a Scottish baronial castle with a friendly and relaxed atmosphere. Set in 28 acres, it’s a remarkably dog-friendly hotel, with bowls of water and treats for canine guests. Featuring a walled garden, playground, woodland walks, and two ponies in a nearby field called Wendy and Cappuccino, it provides ample entertainment for mini-guests as well. Melrose Abbey Dawyck Botanic Garden- rbge. Harmony Garden - visit/places/harmony-garden Borders Textile Towerhouse Sir Walter Scott’s Courtroom Abbotsford - Dryburgh Abbey Lauder Common Ridings Hawick Reivers Festival

Cringletie House


livestock Animal transport vital to Scottish livestock NFU Scotland has outlined the importance of animal transport to the Scottish livestock industry. Responding to the Defra call for evidence on controlling live exports for slaughter and the improvement of animal welfare during transport after the UK leaves the EU, the Union said that, in Scotland, welfare during transport is taken very seriously, both for the reputation and the quality of Scotland’s products. The high animal welfare standards which the Scottish industry delivers is apparent on the many necessary journeys undertaken each year, where animals are transported around Scotland and to other parts of the UK. NFUS considers that the export market has a vital role to play in providing options for producers and supporting a healthy market within the UK. Exports should be well managed and monitored to ensure that all journeys, whether for breeding, slaughter or further finishing, meet with the current animal welfare standards established across the EU. Specifically, on live exports to slaughter outside the UK, the Union stated that, while a very small part of the Scottish trade, the option of well managed and regulated exports should be retained, particularly given the uncertainties for trading postBrexit. NFU Scotland President Andrew McCornick said: “Here

in Scotland, animal transport is vital to our livestock industry and is carried out to the highest welfare standards. “It is an extremely emotive subject and one that generates a considerable amount of misinformation and negativity. Given how important animal transport is to Scotland, decisions must be based on sound evidence and not rhetoric. “The imposition of new rules and standards, paired with the possibility post-Brexit of goods produced to lower welfare standards being imported here, could damage the resilience of the Scottish industry and lessen rather than improve controls on production standards. “Animals travel for a variety of reasons including breeding, further finishing, slaughter or seasonal movements and these movements are essential for Scottish livestock farmers and crofters. Regardless of the reason for transporting stock,

all journeys must meet the same regulatory conditions. The welfare standards are not determined by either the destination or the purpose for the journey. “Live exports play a role in modern production systems providing an alternative market, especially when seasonal production levels are high, serving to support the home market prices. These movements are important to industry but should be well managed and regulated to minimise the risk of welfare problems. Given the uncertainty over future trade which the UK livestock industry is currently facing, there should be consideration by government to ensure that opportunities for the UK industry are not limited through domestic regulation. “Any ill-considered decision to ban live exports to the continent by ferry also has the potential to be the thin end of the wedge. Scotland’s island

livestock production prides its self on high welfare and any implication that journeys by ferry are ‘bad welfare’ could be damaging to their reputation. “As seen by the recent closure on Orkney, the viability of slaughterhouses on Scottish islands is challenging, making transport off islands for slaughter a necessity. Welfare during these journeys is taken very seriously. “Regrettably, our recent offer to show the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Michael Gove some of the bespoke high welfare systems developed to ship animals off the islands was declined but the invitation remains open. “We want to ensure that, when he arrives at his decisions on transport, Scotland’s ability to transport animals at home, to other parts of the UK and abroad is preserved and our record in meeting the highest animal welfare standards is recognised.”

New Video Celebrates Scottish Livestock Farming’s Sustainability Credentials To mark World Environment Day (June 5th 2018), Quality Meat Scotland (QMS) has launched a video which celebrates the Scottish livestock

industry’s positive sustainability credentials. Jim McLaren, chairman of Quality Meat Scotland which promotes the Scotch Beef PGI,

Scotch Lamb PGI and Specially Selected Pork brands, said Scottish livestock farmers have a huge amount to be proud of in their role as sustainable food producers. (continued on page 48)


livestock “Livestock farming in Scotland has enviable environmental credentials. The reality is around 80% of Scotland’s agricultural land is grass and rough grazing - unsuitable for growing cereals, vegetables or fruit but ideal for producing top quality beef and lamb. “Leading environmentalists recognise the importance of livestock farming, particularly to Scotland’s hills and uplands, and the industry also supports around 50,000 Scottish jobs, many of which are in fragile rural locations.” The short, animated video also highlights the contribution the Scottish red meat industry makes to Scotland’s economy. “Red meat production generates more than £2 billion for Scotland’s economy and our industry benefits from family farms run by farmers who share generations of livestock


management skills and also embrace innovation and new technology,” he said. Scotland’s livestock farmers were also, Mr McLaren observed, global pioneers in quality assurance, which brings with it guarantees on traceability and production methods which are the envy of the world. There are 10,000 members of the Scottish industry’s whole chain assurance scheme, which makes animal welfare a priority. “What we offer from Scotland could not be more different to what is produced by the majority of our overseas competitors. Our industry has a huge amount to be proud of in terms of its sustainability messages,” said Mr McLaren. The video can be viewed at video-library and on QMS Twitter and Facebook social media feeds and QMS’s Moo Tube Channel.

livestock Cost and scale of field trials for bovine TB vaccine may make them unfeasible, study suggests Field trials for a vaccination to protect cattle against bovine tuberculosis (bovine TB) would need to involve 500 herds – potentially as many as 75,000-100,000 cattle – to demonstrate cost effectiveness for farmers, concludes a study published in the journal eLife. Instead, the researchers suggest that the scale and cost of estimating the effect of a vaccine on transmission could be dramatically reduced by using smaller, less expensive experiments in controlled settings – using as few as 200 animals. Bovine TB is an infectious disease that affects livestock and wildlife in many parts of the world. In the UK, it is largely spread between infected cattle; badgers are also involved, transmitting to and receiving infection from cattle. Culls to keep badger populations small and reduce the likelihood of infecting cattle have proven controversial both with the public and among scientists. The UK has a policy of ‘test and slaughter’ using the tuberculin test and slaughter of infected animals. A vaccine (BCG) exists, but can cause some vaccinated cattle to test positive falsely. As such, the vaccine is currently illegal in Europe. Researchers are trying to develop a so-called ‘DIVA test’ (‘Differentiates Infected from Vaccinated Animals’) that minimises the number of false positives, but none are yet licensed for use in the UK. The European Union has said it would consider relaxing its laws against bovine TB vaccination if the UK government were able to prove

that a vaccine is effective on farms. Any field trials would need to follow requirements set by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA). In research published today, a team of researchers led by the University of Cambridge has shown using mathematical modelling that satisfying two key EFSA requirements would have profound implications for the likely benefits and necessary scale of any field trials. The first of these requirements is that vaccination must be used only as a supplement, rather than replacement, to the existing test-and-slaughter policy. But use of vaccination as a supplement means that a successful vaccine which reduces the overall burden and transmission of disease may nonetheless provide only limited benefit for farmers – false positives could still result in animals being slaughtered and restrictions being placed on a farm. The second of the EFSA requirements is that field trials must demonstrate the impact of vaccination on transmission rather than just protecting individual animals. The team’s models suggest that a three year trial with 100 herds should provide sufficient to demonstrate that vaccination protects individual cattle. Such a trial would be viable within the UK. However, demonstrating the impact on vaccination on transmission would be almost impossible because the spread of bovine TB in the UK is slow and unpredictable.

Quality Meat Scotland Unveils Focused Five Year Strategy and Vision

The organisation tasked with promoting some of Scotland’s most iconic food brands, Quality Meat Scotland, has unveiled a new strategy and vision for the five-year period to 2023. Speaking at QMS’s media briefing, Jim McLaren, Chairman of QMS, said the development of new strategic priorities had followed full and careful consideration of THE FACTORS INmUENCING THE different parts of the Scottish red meat industry. “The development of QMS’s strategic priorities involved input from our board and executive team along with our wider staff and key stakeholders over a fivemonth period and took into consideration the challenges and opportunities which exist for the businesses operating in the various areas of our industry,” said Mr McLaren. Quality Meat Scotland’s overall strategy for 2018 to 2023 is “to support the development of a sustainable, professional, resilient and profitable Scottish red meat industry which makes an important contribution to Scotland Food & Drink’s target of £30bn by 2030”. This strategy is closely aligned with the Scottish Government’s economic strategy of increasing sustainable economic growth and the

next phase of Scotland’s National Food and Drink Policy - Becoming a Good Food Nation as well as Scotland Food & Drink’s “Ambition 2030” vision. Alan Clarke, chief executive of QMS, said that soon after he took over the reins as chief executive ten months ago it become very apparent to him that QMS as an organisation is delivering a very impressive and diverse workload for the industry. Having spent much of his first 10 months travelling around Scotland to meet people working in every part of the Scottish red meat industry, Mr Clarke said the industry had a great deal to be proud of. “Equally, QMS takes great pride in the work it delivers for the Scottish red meat industry which supports 50,000 jobs and generates over £2 billion for Scotland’s economy. “Our vision, developed as part of our strategic review, is to be valued by our key stakeholders as a business support organisation which delivers strongly for the Scottish red meat industry as it continues to build a global reputation for animal welfare, quality assurance and integrity”. To view the full strategy visit

livestock Warm, wet weather heightens parasite risk in sheep and cattle The latest NADIS1 Parasite Forecast sponsored by Boehringer Ingelheim highlights that the recent warm, wet weather heightens the risk of parasites in sheep and cattle. SHEEP A key component of a farm’s sustainable parasite control programme is forward planning to provide “safe grazing” right from the start of the grazing season. One benefit is that lambs grazing safe pastures with ewes shouldn’t need worming until after weaning. Ideally, wean lambs onto silage or hay aftermaths that have not been grazed by sheep earlier in the year. By mid-summer any overwintering larvae will have died off and fields can then be considered ‘safe’.


“Lambs grazing permanent pasture usually require worming to limit build-up of infective larvae later in the season (‘midsummer rise’). When lambs are dosed, delay any move onto aftermath to allow the treated flock to become lightly reinfected with worms that were not exposed to the wormer, diluting any worms within the lambs that survived treatment and so reducing selection for resistant strains of worms.” Suggests Sioned Timothy, Ruminant Technical Manager at Boehringer Ingelheim. Timing of the move and need for worming treatment(s) for lambs will depend upon grazing history, levels of contamination by periparturient ewes, stocking density and prevailing weather conditions.

Ms Timothy, continues: “Moving weaned lambs onto aftermaths during July and August can reduce the risk of parasitic disease. This simple management practice reduces exposure to the high larval challenge that can build up on pasture. This is one of the most critical components of sustainable parasite control.” Where aftermaths are not available, performance monitoring using growth rates, or worm faecal egg counts (FECs) on lambs every 2-4 weeks from June onwards, can be used to guide anthelmintic treatments. Pooled faecal samples from approximately 10-12 lambs in a group can be used for FECs and will help guide the need for treatment. FollowSCOPS2recommendations by leaving some lambs untreated

and monitor treatment efficacy by performing a drench test posttreatment. Ongoing monitoring of wormer efficacy is increasingly important. The cheapest and simplest way is to perform a drench test to check anthelmintic efficacy. Ask your vet or SQP for advice. Prolonged local dry weather during summer can delay larval challenge to lambs grazing contaminated pastures, but infectivity will return in wet weather. It’s important to remember to include rams in the farm’s parasite control programme because they may have increased susceptibility to PGE (Parasitic gastroenteritis). Also, if rams often graze the same field every year a significant build-up of infection will occur.

livestock Targeted Selective Treatments (TST) Those in good body condition and those performing well can be left untreated. In general, only 40-60 per cent of lambs require worming1. This strategy greatly reduces the likelihood of selecting for resistant strains of worms as it allows a pool of unselected parasites to pass eggs onto pasture known as ‘refugia’. This, in turn helps to maintain wormer efficacy in the longer term. Target anthelmintic treatments at lambs that fail to meet expected growth rates. Regular weighing also identifies poor growth that may be caused by overstocking or trace element deficiencies. Fly Strike Blowfly strike affects around 80% of UK sheep flocks each year1. Female flies are attracted by the odour of decomposing matter such as wounds or soiled fleece. Preventing diarrhoea caused by worm infections will greatly reduce the risk of blowfly strike on the breech. CATTLE Strategic worm control in cattle is usually applied to autumn or winter-born weaned calves in their first grazing season, and in spring-born beef suckler calves in their second grazing season. Wormers should always be administered following the COWS 5 R’s principles – Right product; Right Animal; Right time; Right dose; given in the Right way.3 Cattle receiving strategic anthelmintic treatments in the early part of the grazing season should remain on the same pasture for the entire grazing season or be moved to safe pastures e.g. aftermaths, as they become available. Even low levels of worm infections can reduce growth rate by around 30% in beef calves and replacement dairy heifers1. In dairy cows, worm infections can cause a drop in milk yield of 1kg per day1. In severe infections, there is illthrift, loss of body condition and diarrhoea4.

Ms Timothy says: “Calves in their first grazing season are most at risk of disease, and heavy worm burdens will cause ill-thrift and potentially severe scouring. Not only that, we know that gutworm has a potential impact on future performance, particularly fertility. Sub-clinical growth checks mean heifers take longer to reach target weight for first service, and can take longer to get in calf, with multiple inseminations often required. “Despite popular misconception, adult cows will become infected by gutworm, though they carry lower worm burdens, shed fewer eggs and don’t show outward signs of disease. However, the effect on productivity is well documented; milk production decreases by at least one litre per day in affected animals and the additional potential for reduced fertility with increased calving to conception ratios reduces overall performance5.” Lungworm Lungworm disease (‘Husk’) can appear from June onwards in unvaccinated calves, cattle without an effective anthelmintic programme, and naïve adult cattle. Adult dairy cattle that have not built up immunity through natural challenge in previous years are also susceptible to lungworm. Early signs include coughing, initially after exercise then at rest, increased respiratory rate and difficulty in breathing. Affected cattle rapidly lose weight and body condition and should be removed from infected pasture and treated as quickly as possible. Adult dairy cows may show a sudden and dramatic drop in milk yield. Cattle observed coughing or showing the signs of potential lungworm infection should be investigated by the farm’s vet and prompt treatment with a suitable, fast-acting, zero milk withhold wormer, such as EPRINEX® Pour On may be advised, depending on the diagnosis.


VET Don’t Forget Your Sunhat! By Andy Cant Northvet Veterinary Group In Orkney this year we have had the best weather in late spring, early summer for some years and with all that sunshine and warmth, grass and plants are looking lush and healthy. As a fair skinned ginger headed Scot I’ve always been aware that too much sunshine causes sunburn, so sunscreen, and a wide brimmed sunhat are used frequently to protect me from the UV light. Whilst animals don’t frequently get sunburn per se they can get photosensitization of the skin, which doesn’t necessarily require prolonged exposure to strong sunlight. The primary form of this is where animals ingest toxic plants containing photodynamic agents which directly sensitize the skin eg Hypericin, contained in St Johns Wort. The secondary form is when liver damage from plant and fungal toxins in for example Bog Asphodel and Ragwort interferes with the secretion of phylloerythrin, a degradation product

of chlororphyll in plants. When this builds up in the body, again the skin is sensitized, and chemicals released damage the skin causing swelling, scabs and ulceration, often with serum oozing through the skin drying in yellow crusts. This can be extremely painful and debilitating for animals, which will often actively seek shade. Cogentital enzyme deficiencies such as Bovine Congenital Erythropoietic Protoporphyria (BCEPP) also cause photosensitization. I’ve seen this condition a few times in limousine cattle where it can affect very young calves as well as older animals. Affected animals should be protected from UV light by housing inside for up to 3wks and removing from the source of toxic plants. Painkillers and anti INmAMMATORY TREATMENTS should be part of the nursing care and antibiotics may be required if the skin is ulcerated. And if there is a cloud in the sky – in this instance it is a silver lining!


pigs The art of pig playtime

Pig KerPlunk and a popcorndispensing piñata are among a collection of unique objects created for an event at a Scotland’s Rural College (SRUC) research farm which explored how pigs like to play. A ten-minute film of the pigs interacting with the play objects is now on exhibition at The Roslin Institute. Edinburgh College of Art lecturer Andrea Roe used a Leverhulme Trust artistin-residence award to work with SRUC animal behaviour specialists. The project was one part of her work during the residency and revealed pigs’ great enthusiasm for investigative play. Leverhulme Early Career Fellow Cath Keay, also from ECA, joined Andrea at the farm. Over the course of a week, the artists created eight sculptural objects that they hoped would appeal to both humans and pigs. They chose materials that would invite the pigs to play and that would encourage the animals to smell, tear apart and eat the objects, all of which were designed around a carnival theme. 52

Other objects included ‘Fruit Machine’, ‘Apple Barrel’ and ‘Sweep Sensation’. The idea for the project drew on the work of Professor Alistair Lawrence, Chair of Animal Behaviour & Welfare at SRUC and The Roslin Institute. Prof Lawrence’s group is interested in how enrichments encouraging ‘positive’ behaviour, such as play, can contribute to welfare in farmed animals. Prof Lawrence said: “The inclusion of animal-based welfare measures such as the ability to move freely and a positive humananimal relationship among the proposed guiding principles for World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) animal welfare standards reflects that positive welfare is now an active topic of discussion on the world stage.” To promote the work, a newspaper publication called CARNEVALE, was produced with contributions from Prof Lawrence, SRUC scientist Prof Françoise Wemelsfelder and creative writer Tessa Berring. The paper includes

a QR code which links to a video featuring the pigs interacting with their play objects. The pigs were filmed by Brian Mather, Senior e-Learning Developer at the Royal (Dick) School of Veterinary Studies.

Andrea said: “Throughout the process of designing and making the objects we thought about what matters to pigs and carefully crafted objects that they could interact with and which would fit their body proportions.”

Pig Producers Benefitting from Seasonal Increase Scottish pig producers are benefitting from the usual seasonal increase in prime pig prices. However, despite rising 2.5% over the past month, the current price is still 11 p/kg dwt lower than last year. According to Stuart Ashworth, Quality Meat Scotland Director of Economics Services, the recent increase in price has come despite a five percent year-onyear increase in the volume of pigs reaching UK abattoirs and increasing carcase weights which has led to an increase in domestic fresh pork availability.

There is then an underlying strength of demand in the UK market. “That demand is underpinned in two ways,” said Mr Ashworth. “Firstly, customs data indicates lower imports of pigmeat and pigmeat products and some growth in exports which, despite the growth in home production, resulted in lower overall availability on the home market. “Secondly, Kantar Worldpanel retail purchase data shows growth in purchases of processed pigmeat, bacon, sausage and ready meals, but there has been

pigs reduced consumption of fresh pork, particularly roasting joints,” he said. The changing demand for roasting joints may be the consequence of rising retail prices. This is a reminder that in the current climate of consumer nervousness and supermarket competition, passing higher prices along the supply chain remains a challenge. “To successfully add retail value, all meat products increasingly need to reflect and demonstrate a matching of consumer values if premium prices are to be achieved. In a

premium market these consumer values are increasingly associated with animal welfare, ethical production practices and proven provenance as well as eating quality,” observed Mr Ashworth. European prime pig prices are also showing a seasonal upturn but are well below year-earlier levels. The level of shortfall against last year is much higher across Europe than in the UK. Like the UK, said Mr Ashworth, European pigmeat production is growing but unlike the UK the EU is facing reduced export demand, particularly from

China, which is putting pressure on producer prices. Global trade is coming under pressure from expanding production in the USA which is expected to see a five percent increase in production during 2018. The US is the second largest supplier of pigmeat onto the global market after the EU, and following from expansion in production, is expected to grow its exports during 2018. Meanwhile, with feed typically accounting for more than two-thirds of the cost of producing pigmeat, he said farmers are nervously reflecting

on increases in spot and futures prices for grains and proteins. Global weather conditions, including drought in the grain belt of the US and similar water issues in Australia combined with an oversupply of water in Argentina, disrupting their harvest, is leading to higher future prices for grains and oilseeds. “Domestically the late spring is contributing to strengthening grain prices as well. Consequently, the seasonal rise in prime pig prices is welcome but because of rising feed and energy prices margins are under renewed pressure,” concluded Mr Ashworth.

UK pig industry halves antibiotic usage in two years Industry leaders have welcomed latest figures which show the pig industry reduced antibiotic usage in the UK by 28 per cent in 2017, bringing the total reduction in two years to more than 50 per cent. According to the latest data taken from the electronic medicine book (eMB), which represents 87 per cent of pigs slaughtered in the UK, antibiotic usage on pig farms dropped from 183 mg/PCU to 131 mg/PCU within 12 months. The 2017 reduction means the pig industry has more than halved its antibiotic usage within the last two years – with the latest figure building on a 34 per cent cut in usage between 2015 and 2016. The news has been welcomed by the Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board (AHDB) which has worked closely with the National Pig Association (NPA), the British Pig Association (BPA), Pig Veterinary Society (PVS), meat levy bodies Quality Meat Scotland (QMS) Northern Ireland Pork and Bacon Forum (NIPBF) and Hybu Cig Cymru – Meat Promotion Wales (HCC), as well as the Responsible Use of Medicines in Agriculture Alliance (RUMA) to help cut the use of antibiotics.

It comes just seven months after targets were announced by the Targets Task Force, set up by RUMA, to reduce antibiotic usage in the pig industry by over 60 per cent between 2015 and 2020. AHDB’s Senior Veterinary Manager Mandy Nevel said: “This is a great industry effort with all parties fully engaged and determined to demonstrate responsible use of antibiotics in pigs. We must keep up the momentum to reduce use further in order to achieve our target of 99 mg/PCU by 2020.” Developed by AHDB Pork and the Veterinary Medicines Directorate (VMD), the electronic medicine book is available to all UK producers and is supported by the Northern Ireland, Scottish and Welsh levy bodies. It provides an electronic version of the paper medicines book to record and quantify usage so producers can review and optimise their on-farm antibiotic use. Since October last year, it became a Red Tractor requirement that quarterly antibiotic data are entered into eMB. Prof Peter Borriello, Chief Executive Officer of the VMD, said: “Congratulations to the pig sector on these impressive

reductions in antibiotic use in 2017, which build on those already seen in 2016. “These achievements are the result of high level collaboration

across the industry to deliver on a challenging and rigorous ongoing plan to reduce and refine antibiotic use, while maintaining the health and welfare of pigs.”


exotic farming scotland

Celebrating North Ronaldsay Sheep By Janice Hopper Due to limited numbers many rare breeds are valued, but having a festival in their honour takes things to an entirely new level. On North Ronaldsay the sheep outnumber the people, they feature in magazine and newspaper articles, and they’ve appeared on the BBC’s Countryfile series, but you get the sense that the locals wouldn’t have it any other way. The fortnight long North Ronaldsay Sheep Festival runs from July 29th - August 10th 2018. Based on Orkney’s most northerly island, the community organised festival aims to ‘raise awareness of its ancient breed of shoreline dwelling sheep’. The flock, numbering some 2,500 beasts, is noted for its unusual diet. Living on the rocky shoreline of an isolated island, these sheep have adapted to survive on a diet of seaweed, rather than grass. Exceptionally few animals can live on seaweed alone - a Galapagos lizard is another notable example - so this is a fascinating breed. “The North Ronaldsay Sheep Festival is a celebration of culture and conservation’, says Festival Co-ordinator Heather Woodbridge, ‘North Ronaldsay sheep are part of the northern short tail group, related to the Soay sheep of St Kilda and the Vilsau of Norway. The aims of the festival are to support the regeneration of the island of North Ronaldsay, promote the mutton and wool from this breed, and rebuild the Sheepdyke that is essential to the day to day management of the breed. All in true Orcadian style!” As well as getting up close to these special animals, attendees 54

exotic farming scotland to the festival can actually make a difference. The sheep’s digestive system has adapted to ingest seaweed, so an ancient dry stone dyke (running for around 13 miles, at 1.8 metres high) prevents the flock from heading inland and feasting on grass. This wall also stops genetic cross-contamination with other sheep. Festival going volunteers can assist with the essential maintenance of the dyke, which annually takes a pounding from the seas and storms that batter the island over the winter months. Volunteers learn traditional skills from experienced craftsmen in the process. “This breed is particularly susceptible to copper poisoning. If they fed solely on grass we’d risk up to 50% of animals dying within a year, therefore keeping

the flock on the shore is essential to the survival of the breed,’ says Heather. ‘With the general depopulation of rural and farming areas, North Ronaldsay today has a population of under fifty people. The amount of people power required to maintain the Sheepdyke properly is more than the number and ability of the current island population. The North Ronaldsay Sheep Festival is an opportunity for those interested to volunteer to help restore the Sheepdyke and enjoy what our wonderful island has to offer.” Another highlight of the festival is the annual North Ronaldsay ‘punding’. Visitors can assist in rounding up the wild sheep from the beach so they can be clipped. The sheep run together on the shore as a communal flock

with many different owners so clipping is essential to identify each shepherd’s sheep. As well as a tourist attraction, the animals are renowned for their wool, which is sold to knitters, and the sheep can be slaughtered for mutton. “Farmed animals will not be kept unless they have value to the shepherd, so I would encourage people to support North Ronaldsay farmers by trying the mutton’, enthuses Heather. ‘The meat tastes delicious. North Ronaldsay sheep are sent to the abattoir at, or after, four years of age, so the sheep enjoy a long and free-range life compared to more intensive farming practices. You can taste it in the quality of the meat.” The rarity of the sheep also means that they’ve been welcomed into the Slow Food Movement’s global ‘Ark of Taste’ that protects, supports and promotes rare breeds, skills and produce on the verge of extinction. Wendy Barrie of Slow Food Scotland passionately supported the move of North Ronaldsay Sheep into the renowned ark. “It’s about time Scotland recognised the value of its fabulous heritage breeds’, says Wendy. ‘Landrace breeds that are small in size but big in flavour are more interesting, more sustainable and often far better suited to the natural habitats of Scotland.”

Despite their rarity these animals are survivors; hardy, with thick fleeces, they can tolerate extreme weather and usually lamb with little assistance, but they do bring their own challenges, which festival organiser Heather Woodbridge is familiar with. “As the sheep live on the beach, sand in the fleece is a problem for shearing and it must be done using hand-shears, which is labour intensive’, says Heather. ‘The communal farming aspect is not necessarily a challenge but requires coordination with other shepherds to run ‘punds’ to round up the sheep each year for shearing, taking in the ewes and for sending to slaughter. Additionally, the Kirkwall abattoir was recently shut, and the lack of a local abattoir could be a serious issue, however progress is being made to reopen a smaller facility in the near future.” Despite the challenges, the farmers, locals and visitors appreciate the history and heritage associated with the North Ronaldsay flocks. “Working with these sheep is similar to the way of working that was done in the 1800s’, says Heather, ‘The North Ronaldsay Sheep are a real piece of living history, and island shepherds take great pride in their animals.” Another aspect to the festival is its cultural programme, including workshops using the North Ronaldsay wool and sheepskins, informative talks, a couple of island ceilidhs, an evening of traditional music, as well as open mic nights. The festival stands out as something truly different, and rarely do we see an animal celebrated and supported in such a glorious manner. For two weeks each summer, this rare breed is the star of the show. For the latest updates on the festival head here For general information visit - How to Get There - Set sail from Aberdeen, Scrabster or Lerwick with Northlink


dairy Union welcomes milk price moves NFU Scotland has welcomed positive milk price moves in recent weeks and believes that commodity prices indicate that a farmgate price of 30p per litre is achievable. NFU Scotland’s Milk Committee visited First Milk’s headquarters in Paisley on 12th June. The farmer-owned First Milk announced a milk price increase of 1.2p per litre for July taking its price on a liquid standard litre (4% butterfat and 3.3% protein) to 27.20p, whilst the manufacturing standard litre (4.2% butterfat and 3.4% protein) will be 28.12ppl.

Recent welcome price announcements from Muller and Arla also reflect the strengthening seen in all dairy commodity prices. Speaking from Paisley, Milk Committee Chairman John Smith, a dairy farmer from Campbeltown, said: “We firmly believe that a farmgate price of 30p per litre is achievable. It is essential that all parts of the supply chain ensure strengthening markets are reflected quickly in prices. “There are many different milk contracts out there and achieving all the quality and production bonuses will be a challenge for some, but the tone of the market is definitely

changing. More increases must follow as futures markets and physical sales of commodities are both very positive. “All processors must take this opportunity to build trust in their pricing models by increasing farmgate prices at a pace and magnitude that reflects where the market is. “Key price indicators, the Actual Milk Price Equivalent (AMPE) and Milk for Cheese Value Equivalent (MCVE) now sit at an average of more than 33p per litre. Prices for milk powders, butter and cream are all up by more than 10 percent in the past month.

“That justifies price increases that would allow dairy farmers to start to rebuild their balance sheets after a very difficult extended period of poor prices and higher costs due to a very difficult winter.” At the visit to First Milk, committee members heard more about the co-op’s recent move back to a simpler pricing model for all members, and the development of a strong farmer governance structure. The new focussed strategy is designed to simplify and streamline the First Milk business for the benefit of their members after several difficult years for the co-op.

Scottish Government urged to make the right decision on new dairy proposal Graham’s The Family Dairy is calling on the Scottish Government to back growth and generational improvement – and its commitment to the SNP’s Sustainable Growth Commission report – by approving its planning application for Airthrey Green in Stirling. The plan will facilitate the single largest investment in the Scottish dairy industry in more than a generation through the creation of a £40m processing, R&D and training facility, while also delivering vital housing to resolve Stirling Council’s longstanding shortfall. The third-generation family dairy business – in partnership with Mactaggart & Mickel Homes – submitted the planning application for the development which encompasses 600 houses including 150 affordable units, a new primary school and public park in 2014. The application was recommended for approval by the Council’s Head of Planning, however, it was refused and has since been subject to a two-year planning appeal. The project, which has been a total of eight years in the making, is now with Kevin Stewart the 56

Minister for Local Government and Housing for approval. If passed, it will generate 1,425 jobs and inject £65.3m gross value added (GVA) into the Scottish economy. Robert Graham, managing director at Graham’s The Family Dairy, is calling on the Scottish Government to approve the application, which he believes

is firmly in line with a range of policies and strategies - including the SNP’s Growth Commission report, Scotland’s Economic Strategy, the Scottish Planning Policy, Stirling’s Economic Strategy and the Scottish Food & Drink Strategy. He also believes it will deliver significant socioeconomic benefits for the local area of Stirling, the Scottish food

and drink industry, and Scotland as a whole. Mr Graham also cautioned that failure to uphold their appeal would be at odds with the First Minster’s commitments at the SNP party conference in Aberdeen to “boost the economy now, preparing for the future and building the homes that people need”.

dairy Pre-weaned heifer calves need more milk More than half the replacement heifer calves being reared on UK commercial dairy units could be growing too slowly to hit targets for optimal health and lifetime productivity. New practical research, carried out by a team from the Royal Veterinary College (RVC), has found that 70% of nearly 500 pre-weaned calves on 11 dairy farms in south east England had growth rates below the recommended 0.7kg per day and of these 20% grew at less than 0.5kg per day. More than 70% of the heifers studied were pure Holsteins. The amount of milk solids fed to individual calves on the 11 farms over their first 63 days of life ranged from 16kg to 56kg. Weaning age varied between 37 and 97 days. The work was co-funded by the Biotechnical and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC) and Volac. Research scientists hope the study findings

will encourage more dairy farmers to feed calves more milk during the pre-weaned phase and to monitor growth rates more closely. According to Professor Claire Wathes, who led the RVC study team, the amount of milk offered correlated positively with growth. “To achieve the recommended growth rate of at least 0.7kg per day, calves need at least 750g of milk powder per day. They should also be offered calf starter ad lib, together with forage and clean water. This improves animal health, as well as growth, and sets them up to calve for the first time by the optimum two years of age,” she said. Dr Jessica Cooke, research scientist with Volac, pointed out that the calf experiences significant health and environmental stresses during the first two weeks of life and that feeding more milk from a few days of age is important for

lifetime productivity. “During the first few weeks of life, calves are unable to eat enough dry feed to meet their energy requirements and are almost entirely dependent on their milk feed,” she said. “Early growth restriction can affect the long-term performance of the adult cow. As expected, the heifer calves offered more milk in the RVC study were found to have better growth

rates up to 63 days of age. But this research also highlights the growth benefits long after weaning of providing a good milk supply in early life. Those fed more were heavier and taller at seven months of age. As a result of this work and other studies, Volac has recently refined its milk feeding recommendations. The result is a ‘best- practice’ feed plan to achieve optimum results.

Practical changes necessary in parlour hygiene to reduce antibiotic use Dairy farmers should be taking practical steps in their parlour hygiene management to ensure antibiotic use is reduced to meet future milk marketing opportunities. Looking at the current status of antibiotic use on farm, Rob Kelly, regional sales director Diversey, who own the Deosan range of hygiene products said: “As an industry we’re all aware of the concern and growing awareness of antibiotic use on farm - and the need for action to reduce current levels. “Milk buyers are already introducing measures to encourage reduced use, and farmers should revisit their milking routines to ensure they’re implementing protocols that are compatible with good milk hygiene and udder health.

“A rigorous udder hygiene programme, carried out with robust well formulated products, is a proven tool to reduce the challenges of the environment responsible for infection and encourage healthier, more productive cows, leading to improved milk quality. “Post milking teat disinfection plays a proven and crucial role in reducing the risk from mastitis causing organisms and a well formulated product will ensure hydrated skin that can withstand the changeable conditions particularly in the summer.

“But when cows are outside, it can be tempting to cut back on key elements of pre-milking teat preparation, perhaps removing a disinfectant altogether. This not only puts more pressure on the post disinfectant to maintain teat condition, it can also lead to fluctuating bactoscan results when cows are dirtier than normal and exposure of the teat to higher challenges of bacteria can lead to infections. “Utilising carefully chosen teat hygiene pre and post milking disinfectants will safeguard your business against unnecessary antibiotic use, and all the significant costs that are associated with it. “Invest in quality hygiene products – Remember that no two products are the same. Choose the correct product for the time

of year, your farm conditions and teat hygiene needs. If soil removal is critical, ensure your choice of product delivers and without detriment to the integrity of the skin. If skin condition is a concern, choose a product that cleans and exfoliates without pulling moisture from the skin. If your pre-milking disinfectant is not meeting your requirements, it’s costing you time and money with little benefit. “So, we urge you this summer to be prepared. Ensure teat skin condition is top of the agenda by seeking advice and choosing a pre-milking teat disinfectant that is fit for the environmental conditions your herd is exposed and which will help you bring super clean healthy teats speedily and effortlessly to the point of milking.” 57

sheep For the best wool prices call Texacloth UK Texacloth UK is looking expand its customer base again this season. With the market being unsettled again this year across the world, with fine Australian and New Zealand wools still in demand it leaves coarse wools sitting on the shelf. When you can buy Australian and New Zealand cross wools at a lower price than uk wools it leaves us in a very tight spot. The major players in the market are the Chinese, they have not bought the same quantity’s of wool in the last couple of years. With that and brexit on the horizon the market is looking unstable. Texacloth is always looking towards the future and is working very hard with our suppliers and customers to create the best prices for UK wools and as a family business working together with farming families

we as a whole hope to increase the payments back to the

producers as much as possible. Contact UK Manager and

Scottish buyer Alan Walsh on 07836 547987.

Launch of makes it easy for farmers to find their local mobile plunge sheep dipper The issue of sheep scab is one of ever-increasing prominence, following on from recent reports confirming the detection of resistance of the sheep scab mite to 3ML wormers1, which are widely used to treat scab. It is estimated that since the elimination of compulsory dipping 26 years ago, there has been a 60-fold increase in sheep scab on UK farms2, making it imperative that farmers and animal health professionals plan appropriately for the control of scab. (Source 1: Endemic sheep scab: risk factors and the behaviour of upland sheep flocks: Rose and Wall). While plunge dipping with a Diazinon dip is a highly effective option for the control and treatment of scab, many farmers do not have the license required to dip, or the necessary permit to dispose of dip. However, the use of a contract mobile plunge sheep dipper can be a cost-effective

way of accessing dipping. To address the fact that farmers may not know how to go about finding and contacting their local contract sheep dipper, Bimeda have created the website, In a matter of seconds, farmers can find the contact details of a number of contract sheep dippers, and information regarding how far they are willing to travel. Many are willing to travel throughout the UK to carry out dipping. Bimeda Professional Services Veterinarian, Rachel Mallet, commented; ‘ This new website makes it easy for farmers to access sheep dipping for their farms. Dipping gives immediate scab and ecto-parasite control and in fact, dipping is the most broad spectrum method of parasite control for sheep as it offers the only way to control scab, ticks, lice, blowfly and keds with one product.’ The benefits of dipping sheep for the control of scab and other

ecto-parasites are many and include; - Dipping targets external parasites only - Dipping does not give rise to anthelmintic resistance - Dipping kills scab mites quickly and helps to reduce the presence of mite antigens present on the skin surface causing inflammation. - The scab mite prefers to spend its entire life cycle on the

animal, but can survive offfleece in clumps of wool for up to 17 days. Dipping gives protection against scab for longer than the 17 days that the mite can survive in the environment, thus allowing for complete elimination in closed flocks - Dipping offers the only way to control scab, ticks, lice, blowfly and keds with one product.

High lambing losses emphasises need for raven cull in Scotland With reports of many young lambs being lost to raven predation at lambing time, the National Sheep Association (NSA) is reiterating its support for the decision by Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH) to grant

licences to allow ravens numbers to be responsibly reduced. NSA believes licences should also be readily available in other parts of the UK affected by the massive increase in raven numbers, which has come about (continued on page 60)


sheep due to the bird’s protected status allowing populations to grow with little deterrent or control. As well as impacting sheep flocks, local wildlife is also facing the danger of limited food stocks, endangering prey and ground nesting bird species such as oystercatchers and lapwings. NSA Chief Executive Phil Stocker explains: “With lambing now finished across the UK, NSA has received reports of very high losses to ravens this year, including flocks in Scotland where 50 to 100 lambs have been killed. Ravens target lambs in vulnerable moments, even striking the very moment they are born, and the loss of a tongue or an eye is a terrible way for these young animals to die. Farmers respect the legislation but must have trust that when species levels reach strong numbers, there can be debate on sustainable levels. Responsible culling under licence will allow farmers to keep on top of the

numbers and protect stock when they are at their most defenceless.” SNH has come under a lot of criticism for its decision and NSA Scottish Region Chairman John Fyall has spoken out in defence of the issue. He says: “I support the process and decision to issue these licences, and condemn the personal attacks that have been made on SNH Chief Executive Mike Cantlay. It is an emotive issue for campaigners, but nothing is as emotive as seeing a newborn lamb trying to find a teat to feed from its mother with no tongue and no eyes.” The licence application process is appropriately stringent, with a farmer required to prove the birds have caused or are at high risk of causing serious damage. Mr Stocker says: “These licences are intended to protect other lifeforms, from wildlife to livestock. They are not going to be given out freely or without proven reason. NSA supports the

practice of licencing in this way, as it ensures no action is taken without considered reason. The purpose of protecting a species is to ensure numbers do not fall below dangerous levels, and

when positive progress is made and populations boom, options must be provided to prevent unintended consequences on other species of domestic and wild animal.”

SCOPS calls for action as first case of resistance to group 4 wormer (monepantel) is reported in the UK The recent publication of the first case of resistance to monepantel (trade name Zolvix) in the UK is a timely and important reminder to sheep farmers and their advisors, says the Sustainable Control of Parasites in Sheep (SCOPS) group. Speaking on behalf of SCOPS, sheep consultant Lesley Stubbings says: “SCOPS welcomes this report because it not only highlights the need for sheep farmer to follow best

practice advice, but also reveals the dangers of not integrating the newer wormer groups into onfarm control programmes before the other groups fail. “It is SCOPS’ understanding that the farm concerned had a history of triple resistance to the 1-BZ (white), 2-LV (yellow) and 3-ML (clear) groups of anthelmintics, which meant they were relying almost exclusively on (continued on page 62)


sheep Three step nutrition approach delivers sheep success on the Isle of Mull Fiona Boa runs Antium Farm on the Isle of Mull where she keeps 350 Cheviots, 150 cross ewes and 150 Blackface on her 2,000 acre site. Due to the nature of the land the majority of the sheep are kept on the hill, with just 100 of the Cheviots kept on lower land. Fiona was first introduced to the Harbro 3 step nutrition solution for sheep two years ago which she feeds to her best Cheviots. She puts mineral lick bucket Feet, Fertility & Worms out pre-tupping, with the essential minerals and vitamins ensuring the high nutritional requirements of the ewe are met and that they are in optimum condition. This season there were no empty ewes when the Cheviots were scanned in February, with them going on to achieve a lambing percentage of 114%.

Fiona remarked that they had not had such a result in over 40 years of breeding on the farm. She attributes the lambing success solely to the introduction of the bucket as nothing else in the farm management has changed. Moving into the winter Fiona feeds Energyze Forage Booster to

provide energy before she moves on to Energyze Vitality during late pregnancy. Vitality helps to reduce the risk of twin lamb disease, improves colostrum quality and helps to produce strong healthy lambs. With a few months off the buckets in the spring, Feet,

Fertility and Worms is then introduced again and the cycle continues! Fiona remarks, “I’ve been delighted with the results of the three step approach, with our lambing percentage and number of ewes in lamb having risen steadily since we first introduced the buckets two years ago.”


NFU Scotland

Farming and crofting should embrace future technology

Technology is something all forms of agriculture has embraced and, in the future, it will be key to increasing productivity, enhancing the biodiversity of our environment and, most importantly, give farmers and crofters a fair return for what we provide. It’s now ten years since we bought our GPS system for the tractor. It’s by no means an ‘all singing all dancing’ set up – there is no autosteer - but for a hill and upland livestock producer the difference it’s made is quite satisfyingly stark. We purchased our GPS system when there was a Land Management Option for precision farming as part of Rural Development measures whereby you received a 40% grant. The total cost before grant was £1600 and I can honestly say that there have been many benefits. Sowing fertiliser on very bare ground that’s been grazed by sheep or spreading on grass stubble for a second cut used to be quite challenging, particularly in dry weather where you struggled to see your previous mark. The GPS system allows you to see exactly where your previous run was and guides you to where you should be on the next run, eliminating any over or underlap, and allowing your fertiliser usage to be much more efficient. Spraying was also a very time-consuming challenge. We would always have markers out on the field and have to get off the tractor after every round to move the markers for the next round. This process was more difficult in uneven fields where you needed markers in the middle as well. Now, I go around the field twice using the last pass option, set the line and continue right across the field until finished. Much quicker, accurate and efficient. Cutting silage or hay is also much simpler. When you open

By Vice President Martin Kennedy up a break, the GPS means there is no need to pace it out, cutting out short bouts which can be so time consuming for those following on with balers and wrappers behind. This year, we went one step further and soil mapped three fields - about 16 ha. The results were very interesting, especially when it came to the pH of the soil. We took 18 samples in every half hectare, giving a more accurate result across the field, as opposed to the traditional ‘W’ method. The next step was to engage a contractor with the technology and software in their tractor to spread the lime only where it was required as the field pH information was linked through the software to the computer system for the spreader which in turn either made the belt go faster or slower depending on requirement. To the casual onlooker who didn’t know what was happening, you would think the spreader was knackered as watching it going up and down the field saw some bits get a heavy dose of lime and some had nothing at all. The reality is the system was levelling up the field and again making maximum use of the product. It has shown the potential that technology has to make farming and crofting on really extensive units easier to manage when there are fewer people around that have the traditional skills required to help sustain what is an important part of the agricultural economy.

sheep the newer monepantel wormer, the 4-AD (orange) group, for worm control. Coupled with animals being moved to low challenge pasture following treatment, which is highly selective for resistance, there was the risk of a ‘perfect storm’ in terms of the development of resistance. Other sheep farmers can avoid this situation by following SCOPS guidelines on the use of the 4-AD and 5-SI (purple) wormers.” SCOPS has been advising that the group 4-AD and 5-SI wormers should be carefully incorporated into control programmes on sheep farms for the last eight years (when Zolvix was launched) as a quarantine drench and a mid/late season treatment for lambs. That advice was given in order to avoid this sort of situation where the other three groups are no longer effective and the group 4AD is relied upon. SCOPS advice on orange and purple wormers:• The two newest wormer groups (4-AD and 5-SI) should be incorporated into worm control programmes on all sheep farms, not left ‘on the shelf’ until the others are no longer effective. Their real value is in prolonging the life of 1-BZ, 2-LV and 3-ML groups.

• There are only two occasions when a group 4-AD or 5-SI should be used and SCOPS suggests farmers alternate between the two groups. The two occasions are quarantine, and mid/late season as a ‘one off’ annual drench for lambs. • Groups 4-AD and 5-SI should only be used at other times under veterinary direction and then only if the full anthelmintic resistance status of the farm is known. • Effectiveness of products used should be monitored carefully. • Best practice must always be followed: When using any wormer, regardless of the group, best practice guidelines should always be followed:• Ensure the correct dose rate (by weighing animals and treating to the heaviest in a group), calibrate the gun and administer correctly, over the back of the tongue. • If moving to low challenge pasture after treatment, sheep must either be left on the dirty pasture for four to five days before moving, or at least 10% of the animals left untreated. • Check the efficacy of wormer treatments on a regular basis. More information can be found at

Join the March Towards Stamping out Lameness UK sheep producers are being encouraged to join the march towards stamping out lameness in the national flock when the industry highlights how to take the first step towards better control during July. Independent experts point out that the later summer months are a great time to start implementing the proven Five-Point Plan for sheep lameness reduction, so there will be plenty of advice available throughout this period to help farmers kick-start their own disease management programme. “The sheep industry has made real progress with lameness over the last five years but must maintain momentum if it is to meet

the Farm Animal Welfare Council (FAWC) target of 2 percent disease incidence in the national flock by 2021,” says Dr Ruth Clements, head of veterinary programmes at farm-based research and development organisation FAI Farms, which developed the FivePoint Plan. “Implemented correctly and given long term commitment, the Five-Point Plan gives sheep farmers a clear framework for managing lameness effectively because it builds natural disease resilience within the flock, reduces the disease challenge and spread on the farm, and improves flock immunity through vaccination. More widespread adoption on (continued on page 64)



NSA Scottish Region By John Fyall, NSA Scottish Region Chairman

farm will also help the sheep sector cut its use of antibiotics for foot infections and meet new industry targets; a sheep sector task force facilitated by RUMA has already signed up to a 10 percent reduction in antibiotic use by 2020,” Dr Clements adds. Dr Clements says sheep farmers are generally keen to get on top of any flock lameness issues, but sometimes feel helpless and often find it difficult to know how and where to start. “Now’s the time to start thinking about it seriously,” she says. “Weaning is an ideal time to cull out any ewes with chronic

feet, re-set the breeding flock for the new sheep year and build from there.” Farmers looking for practical advice on how to take the first step towards reducing sheep lameness in their own flock will be able to visit the MSD Animal Health stands at the NSA Sheep Event (July 18) in Malvern and the Royal Welsh Show (July 22-26) in Builth Wells. During July and beyond, sheep producers should ask their vet or SQP at their local animal health product supplier for guidance and support with implementing the Five-Point Plan.

Penning a new chapter in sheep genetics A new scoping study that will drive the future direction of genetic improvement in the British sheep industry has been announced. Funded by the Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs (DEFRA) and designed to meet the needs of the entire supply chain, the project will be led by Scotland’s Rural College (SRUC) in collaboration with the Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board (AHDB), the National Sheep Association (NSA), AbacusBio and the Centre of Innovation Excellence in Livestock (CIEL). The project

team, made up of industry experts and researchers, will also recommend solutions that deliver breeding goals to maximise genetic, economic and environmental gain across the sector. The project is made up of three work streams: * A review of sheep genetic improvement programmes globally * The definition of the appropriate breeding goals * An estimation of the economic impact of implementing the breeding goals

NSA Scottish Region has fed into the Defra consultation on the future of farm support, which was important to do but a challenge when the devolved settlement on agricultural matters has not yet been agreed with Holyrood. There is much political uncertainty and it looks like Westminster may overrule Scottish Parliament and take a seven-year transition before power in handed from Europe to Holyrood. Equally unpalatable is the absence of written confirmation about devolved budgets, uncertainty around how funds will be allocated past 2022, and the refusal by the Treasury to permit the promised Convergence fund review. This lack of clarity was a theme at NSA Scotsheep in late May, where it was clear throughout the seminar debates that we need to be calling for immediate action by Government to provide detail on future support and trade agreements. We have considerable opportunities but must not throw them away, or allow our industry to be a disposal pawn in trade negotiations. Such discussion was just one element of a very successful NSA Scotsheep,

hosted by the Dalrymple family at Ballantrae, South Ayrshire. In a tougher year of weather and trading conditions than past, we got a real blessing in a good day and a great trade presence, and the organising committee made a good farm into a tremendous show. Other recent activity includes a very useful parliamentary reception, led by Emma Harper MSP and with guests of all ages from across the industry and including allied industries such as shearers and hauliers. We took a positive message that when all economic and tourism benefits of sheep farming are factored in, we could easily be a £1bn industry and we need more recognition within the Scottish economy. NSA Scottish Region has also had discussions with the Cabinet Secretary about the Scottish Sheep Sector Review implementations, including the need for there to be margin at every part of the supply chain. We must make more of the product to ensure everyone benefits and, with this in mind, we are looking for Scottish Government to support a new lamb marketing campaign with QMS this year.

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science & technology Looking into the future of horticulture: hydroponics Since Hadlow College’s Vision50 campaign is reaching into the future of horticulture, what better than to draw attention to one of the most technologically developed farming methods? Hydroponics is a branch of hydroculture, the cultivation of food crops without the conventional use of soil. The method is expected to grow exponentially over the next few decades to meet ever-expanding demands on global food production and supply. Hadlow College is celebrating its 50th anniversary as a leading higher education organisation; therefore it is a great opportunity to shine the limelight on one of modern farming’s innovative blessings. So what is a hydroponic process? Plants are grown hydroponically in many different ways depending on the scale of the development and the crop demand. The most common growing methods involve the use of aggregates or the use of water. Aggregates, including perlite, act as a method of anchorage and allow uptake of nutrients. The aggregates act as a support to the root in acquiring the relevant nutrients needed. A water system, such as the cost-efficient Nutrient Film Technique (NFT), uses a reservoir

and pump system, whereby plants sit side-by-side with their roots exposed to water flowing at the bottom of a large trough. The trough lies at an angle to ensure water circulates from the trough to the reservoir which is then recycled via a UV cleaning system. The nutrient-rich water is then pumped up again. These are just a couple of examples of the many hydroponic systems used to grow crops on a variety of scales. Now a clearer image of a hydroponic set-up has been established, attention can be turned to its benefits, including its important role in the future of farming. For one, hydroponic technology has a multitude of positives; offering complete growth flexibility that is drastically changing the way we grow and supply food. Growers produce food crops much closer to the end supplier, shortening the supply chain and eliminating transportation costs and packaging, which in themselves cause harmful CO2 emissions and the build-up of plastic waste. Moreover, growers have a firmer grasp on their crop cycle routine, ensuring that plants can be grown in the same area for a longer period of time, lowering the chances of crop-loss through waste or disease.

Sustainability is a key debate in the future of farming. Hydroponic technology fits neatly into this frame, as systems assure energy and water efficiency and reduce carbon footprint. Alan Harvey, Acting Head of Faculty: Horticulture at Hadlow College, says: “Crops are grown in small, urban spaces where industrial buildings can adopt a vertical growing system to maximise space. Even kitchens both in restaurants and homes can have smaller hydroponic set-ups, allowing chefs to grow their own produce. As long as electricity and water are available and the correct expertise, hydroponics work in any location – even disused underground stations and WW2 bunkers.”

“In terms of the future of hydroponics, we need to focus on increasing the yield without compromising the quality or growth rate. A greater range of high value crops will probably be grown on hydroponic sites in the UK reducing the need for imports.” With Brexit becoming more of a reality, a UK farming market identity is timely. Hydroponics could lead to a secure investment for the future. Hadlow College is proud to offer hydroponic courses to catapult farming into the future, especially as hydroponics is an innovative system promising versatility and sustainability. Whilst the systems take much skill and expertise both in terms of growing crops and environmental control, it is undoubtedly.

Wood expands to offer complete analytical service Animal, soil and plant analyses are becoming increasingly important tools in farm and environmental management, and rapid growth at Cawood Scientific has brought all of these strands together. The firm, which is the UK’s largest independent provider of analytical laboratory testing services for the land-based industries, has acquired three new businesses over the past 12 months, significantly expanding its 66

capability and overall service offer to its customers. “Farm and environmental managers are increasingly basing their decision-making on sound science, to better target inputs and improve efficiencies,” says managing director Nigel Patrick. “As leading specialists in this area it made sense to expand our services, to offer a complete package of analytical services across the entire agricultural,

horticultural and environmental sectors.” The first acquisition; Mambo-Tox, specialises in soil ecotoxicology, which evaluates agrochemicals for their efficacy in laboratory and field conditions, as well as their impact on non-target insects like honeybees. Based at Southampton University, the firm offers research and robust data for international agchem businesses who are seeking

regulatory approval for their products. Hot on the heels of that purchase came St David’s Laboratory Services in Dungannon, County Tyrone – which has been rebranded as Sci-Tech (Ireland). Specialising in poultry serology, it carries out diagnostic work for poultry producers and vets throughout Ireland, and complements the work carried out at Cawood’s existing Sci-Tech laboratories in Shropshire.

forestry Investors are missing a trick as forestry sector outperforms other assets Galbraith, one of Scotland’s leading rural management and property consultancies, is warning that investors are missing out on healthy returns in the forestry sector, which has been boosted by tax incentives and increasing global demand for timber. Philippa Cliff, head of the forestry division at Galbraith, says: “Commercial forestry has been the top performing asset in the UK in the past 15 years, with the best woodlands generating returns in excess of 10% a year. Despite this impressive performance, there are actually very few investors active in the market. Woodland seems to be considered as an

investment option only by a few people in the know. Timber is currently the fourth biggest UK import, but a weaker pound has pushed up import costs, fuelling an immediate rise in timber prices and increased demand for homegrown timber. Planting land is relatively inexpensive to acquire – in Scotland it is currently less than £5,000/hectare despite experiencing a rapid rise in value in recent years. With payment rates of £3,840/hectare for diverse conifers, £5,520/hectare for commercial broadleaves, and £3,200/hectare for native broadleaves, plus enhanced rates in target areas, growing trees can

Tractor-mounted winches join the Spaldings range

Spaldings, the direct sales specialist for equipment, tools and parts, has been appointed national dealer for the UK and Ireland for tractormounted logging winches used in the forestry, farm and estate woodland, and grounds maintenance industries. The products have been selected from German manufacturer Pfanzelt’s logging equipment range to complement the TMC Cancela heavy duty scrub mowers and forestry shredders that Spaldings also distribute. Nigel Whelan, marketing director at Spaldings, describes Pfanzelt’s product

offer better prospects than sheep farming. “The solid returns for investors are likely to continue in the medium to long-term because of three factors – firstly the growing biomass sector which uses wood as a biofuel, secondly, the global demand for timber, which is expected to increase by an additional 33 per cent by 2050, and thirdly the Forestry Commission’s Woodland Carbon Code, which allows forest owners to trade in woodland carbon units. Investors can also offset carbon emissions from other business interests against these carbon units, if they so wish.” Philippa Cliff continued, “In addition to the very attractive returns, the tax system is geared towards helping those who invest in woodland. No Income Tax or Capital Gains Tax is payable on the sale of timber and commercial forests are entitled to 100 per cent

Business Property Relief from Inheritance Tax after two years of ownership. “We would advise prospective investors to take advice but to not be daunted by the prospect of investing in something that is unknown to them. This is a stable asset class and now is a good time to make the most of the planting grants and tax incentives available.” Galbraith has a number of clients who are currently purchasing woodlands and has conducted numerous applications to the Woodland Carbon Code on behalf of clients. In addition to private purchases and sales, Galbraith recently sold a portfolio of woodland on behalf of the Forestry Commission, bringing the total sold on their behalf since 2010 to 5,500 hectares. Galbraith has been buying, selling and valuing woodland and planting land for over 100 years.

engineering as coming from the upper end of the quality spectrum: “The family-owned business has a philosophy of building equipment for performance, long service life and low maintenance. “It’s a specialist in forestry and woodland equipment, making timber cranes and trailers, forest tractors and selfpropelled timber forwarders in addition to the winches. As with the TMC Cancela products, we’ll support the Pfanzelt machines supplied in the UK and Ireland with our own service back-up team.”


estate Angus Glens estate praised for biodiversity by visiting German conservationists International conservationists have lauded a Scottish grouse moor for its land management which has led to 98 different bird species being found present on the estate. Glenogil Estate, positioned between Glen Clova and Glen Lethnot in the famed Angus Glens, has been visited for the past three years by German scientists examining biodiversity in Scotland. Led by Dr Daniel Hoffman of Game Conservancy Deutschland, the team found an increase of 35 bird species from their first visit in 2015 and are crediting heather burning and predator control as the main drivers in the abundance of wildlife found at Glenogil. Among the birds found by Dr Hoffman and his team were red listed species including curlew, lapwing, black grouse and merlin. An abundance of non-bird species were also found, such as mountain hares and lizards. The findings of the scientists are discussed in a new film which can be viewed on the Angus Glens Moorland Group Facebook page at https://www. Daniel Hoffman said: “This is the third year that we have worked here at Glenogil and so far we’ve found 98 different bird species in this whole area. We wanted to show other estates, other countries in Britain and in the whole of Europe, that you can have this biodiversity only when you have the ecologically correct form of management in an area. “When I was here for the first time it was amazing to see the biodiversity. We read papers and articles saying that species such as the curlew, a flagship 68

species in nature conservation, are endangered in Britain but you can’t believe that when you are here. We find golden plovers with a high population density, and even on these few hectares here on Glenogil, we find almost double the number of breeding pairs that you find in the whole of Germany. They breed here because the landscape is managed as it is. “At Glenogil you have habitat management and predation control so the survival rate of our target species is so good. This creates a kind of donator population and other areas they will have benefitted from the work that is done here. If you have an area and say, “Oh, okay, we do nothing here,” then you will lose biodiversity, and that’s what we want to show. We want to show that you have to do habitat management and predation

control to have a high level of biodiversity from different species, all different species.” Danny Lawson, head gamekeeper at Glenogil Estate, and a member of the Angus Glens Moorland Group, said: “We’ve been delighted to welcome Dr Hoffman and his team to demonstrate the management techniques which work so well at Glenogil and can hopefully be replicated to the benefit of wildlife across Scotland, the UK and Europe. “Land management, especially for gamekeepers on moorland estates, has never been under closer scrutiny. Much has changed in the sector over the last 15 years including at Glenogil, and it is only fair that we recognise where our management is creating a rich tapestry of wildlife.”

Glenogil is one of a number of estates working to help halt the worrying decline in wading birds such as curlew, lapwing and oyster catcher through the collaborative Working for Waders project. The initiative is being delivered following the vitally important Understanding Predation report, published by Scotland’s Moorland Forum in February 2016. Ross Macleod, Head of Policy, GWCT Scotland, said: “Glenogil is a living example of Working for Waders in action and delivering on the ground. “A combination of habitat, sound management and predator control are at the heart of why wader populations are successful here, and a great example for others to learn from and to follow.”

estate Peaceful Argyll estate with own chapel for sale Galbraith is pleased to bring to the market Auchinellan Estate, an attractive residential and agricultural estate extending to over 760 acres in a scenic location in Argyll & Bute. The property includes a traditional sevenbedroom estate house, a fivebedroom farmhouse, additional holiday cottages, woodland, agricultural land, hill ground and a range of outbuildings which offer the potential for development. The residential properties on the estate include: Auchinellan Estate house, which has seven bedrooms, a spacious breakfasting kitchen and a separate dining room. The property retains many charming original features including fireplaces in some rooms and the extensive library. The house is situated within an area of mature garden, trees and policies. A separate dwelling, Auchenillan Farmhouse benefits from a peaceful setting and is bordered on two sides by mature trees with a picturesque burn running alongside. The house has five bedrooms, a spacious kitchen/ dining room, and a sitting room. The estate also has a modern three-bedroom bungalow and a traditional steading which has the potential to be converted for use as additional accommodation subject to planning consent. There is a further one-bedroom cottage, Mrs Rowan’s Cottage, situated in a secluded position which has its own separate access to the estate from the village of Ford. Willie Macnicol’s cottage is available as a separate lot, which is a traditional cottage with one bedroom. Notably, there is a working chapel on the estate, constructed in 1955 by Carmichael’s of Lochgilphead as a showcase for mid-twentieth century craftsmanship and designed to

Wader Research at GWSDF Auchnerran

By Dr Dave Parish, Head of Scottish Lowland Research, GWCT Scotland It’s exciting times at our demonstration farm at Auchnerran on Deeside. At the time of writing, the wader breeding season is in full swing and there are lots of lapwing, oystercatcher, snipe, woodcock and curlew busy with their clutches and some young chicks. Our research team on the ground led by GWCT research assistant Marlies Nicolai are equally busy trying to keep tabs on them all. Last month the farm was visited by Dr Andrew Hoodless who is head of wetland research with the Game & Wildlife Conservation Trust. He lent an expert hand catching and ringing some lapwing chicks and an adult male curlew. We are doing this at Auchnerran as part of our ongoing efforts to better understand the factors impacting the survival and productivity of these declining species. We know we are lucky at Auchnerran to have so many

breeding pairs of all these species. When we took over the tenancy of the farm in 2015 we were not sure what numbers we had but a combination of a relaxed farming regime and active predator control had paid dividends. Most farms and landholdings however are not so lucky. The lapwing and curlew, for example, are redlisted with lapwing declining by 58 per cent in Scotland between 1995 and 2015, whilst curlew have declined by 59 per cent. The fate of the curlew has been well publicised of late with World Curlew Day and other events hoping to draw attention to the species’ plight, as the UK holds a large proportion of the world population. We are carefully monitoring our wader populations at Auchnerran as we step up the pressure from the farm and the demands of a healthy 1200 head plus flock. Our research programme at Auchnerran aims to help

Dr Andrew Hoodless, Head of Wetland Research, GWCT, with Marlies Nicolai, GWCT Research Assistant, doing fieldwork at Auchnerran

us understand how we might better support all our wader species and reverse their fortunes. If we can assess which features of the landscape at Auchnerran are particularly important to lapwing chicks, by radiotagging them and following their progress from just after hatching, we will be able to feed in this information to Government and inform the next generation of agrienvironment schemes in Scotland and the UK. Also, with curlew we hope to tag some breeding adults so we can follow them not only whilst they breed at Auchnerran but also after they leave so we can establish where they go and what happens to them. It is highly likely that decreased breeding success has had a big influence on the population trends of the lapwing and curlew, and probably other waders too, and this research will tell us if this is indeed the case. We should find out which environmental factors are contributing to their decline and how we might begin to remedy the situation. It is still early days for us at Auchnerran but over the next few months and years we hope that the situation will become much clearer. Further information from: Dr Dave Parish Game & Wildlife Conservation Trust Tel: 01738 551511 Mob: 07889 891956

estate A daunting challenge that needs to be faced By David Johnstone, chairman of Scottish Land & Estates show future generations that contemporary workmanship can produce a perfect traditionallystyled building. The chapel has a specially commissioned ‘dove’ window above the beautiful stone altar, lancet windows and a magnificent barrel-vaulted internal roof construction. This is a lovely and very unusual asset for the next owners of the estate to enjoy and to conserve for future generations. Duncan Barrie, who is handling the sale of the estate for Galbraith, said: “Auchinellan Estate is a hidden gem in a secluded location in rural Argyll overlooking Loch Ederline, with beautiful views. The land includes hill ground, pasture, an amenity woodland and there is the potential for a small shoot and good opportunities for stalking on the hill. The purchaser would enjoy an idyllic rural lifestyle in a stunning part of Scotland. “The properties on the estate lend themselves easily to holiday lets as this is a very scenic part of the world. Recent improvements have been made to the farming enterprise at Auchinellan and there are considerable further opportunities to continue and expand the level of income generated on the estate, whether through holiday lets, or perhaps further development of the farming business, forestry or sport.” There are several areas of woodland on the estate and the current owners have recently planted 2,000 trees on a lowlying area of ground, which were planted without grant funding and are therefore not subject to a programme of required maintenance. The farmland at Auchinellan extends to about 306 hectares (756

Acres) and provides the basis for a productive upland farming unit. Currently there are about 250 sheep on the land, of which 180 are ewes, with up to 18 cows grazed on the hill each year. Auchinellan is situated about twelve miles from Lochgilphead and half a mile outside the small village of Ford, at the southern end of Loch Awe. Historically Ford was a stopping point on the drovers’ route to Inveraray. The surrounding area offers many opportunities for hill walking, pony trekking, fishing, sailing or shooting. Nearby Knapdale Forest in the heart of Argyll has been home to the Knapdale Beavers since 2009. In November 2016 the Scottish Government allowed the beavers to remain at Kapdale. This is the first time that a mammal has been formally reintroduced in the UK. Currently the three properties on the estate which are offered as holiday lets have each achieved occupancy rates of between 30 – 35 weeks per annum on average. Auchinellan House is let for between £1,000 and £2,000 per week depending on the season; Mrs Rowan’s Cottage is let for between £250 and £500 per week and Auchenellan Farmhouse is let for between £500 and £1,000 per week. This is a well-established enterprise which the next owners could continue, if so desired. Auchinellan Estate is for sale through Galbraith, either as a whole, for offers over £1,485,000 or in two separate lots, as follows: Lot 1: Offers Over £1,360,000; Lot 2: Offers Over £125,000. For further details please contact Galbraith on 01786 434600 or email

To those attending Scottish Land & Estates’ annual conference recently, the political ding dong between Fergus Ewing and Lord Ian Duncan made for interesting viewing. As with all such rural and farming conferences currently being held, Brexit was the watchword and whilst the update from senior government politicians was welcome, it also brought into stark focus that rural businesses – especially those involved in agriculture - cannot delay taking big decisions in the hope that clarity on our departure arrives soon. The countryside and rural economy was already undergoing significant pressures prior to the decision to leave the European Union but Brexit creates unprecedented difficulties and challenges for land-based businesses. The future of agricultural and rural policy, trade arrangements and what they will mean for food imports and exports as well the potential impact on profitability for many Scottish businesses – it’s all up for grabs. However, in some senses, there is a need to put the politics to one side. Scottish agricultural and rural business cannot afford to sit back and businesses will have to make daring and innovative investment decisions and failure to adapt to current uncertainty and the post-

Brexit landscape will have far reaching consequences for generations to come. It is encouraging to see some rural land-based businesses rising to that challenge in different parts of the country. We are seeing MORE mEXIBLE ARRANGEMENTS coming into place such as more contract farming and joint ventures. And there is certainly a growing interest in forestry as well as increasing diversification in areas such as deer farming not to mention tourism, accommodation and attractions. This is taking place against a backdrop where at best, we expect a gradual decline in levels of financial support for farming. And the speed of change could be even more stark. Businesses are having to assume that little support will be there because it is easier to plan for a worst case scenario now rather than be hit with the reality in four or five years time. We recognise that those who are charged with dealing with Brexit have a tough job on their hands the complexities are mindboggling. We expect our leaders from across the political spectrum to deliver – but we also need to do our bit and shape the positive future of farming as well. It is a daunting challenge but one that must be faced for the good of Scottish agriculture.

For more information Telephone : 0131 653 5400


Equine Angle

Nicole Lockhead Anderson bags Equithème Leading Pony Showjumper of the Year Qualifier win at Weston Lawns Equitation Centre

Sixteen year-old Nicole Lockhead Anderson made the long trip from Banchory, Aberdeenshire worthwhile when she bagged the win in the first of this year’s Equithème Leading Pony Showjumper of the Year Qualifiers at the Weston Lawns Equitation Centre Pony Premier in Warwickshire. Against thirty-two other starters, Nicole took not only the win but also one of the three qualification tickets on offer for the Championship Final at Horse of the Year Show. In the four horse jump off, Nicole came out on top with Gangnam Style II, a 9 year-old bay gelding owned by Claire Lockhead. This pair shook off their competition to leave all the fences standing whilst leaving themselves with nearly five seconds in hand after delivering their double clear in 40.50 seconds.

The riders and ponies that finished in first to fourth took home the chance to compete in the Equithème National 148cm Championship at the British Showjumping National Championships. Weston Lawns Equitation Centre – Monday 7th May 2018 Equithème Leading Pony Showjumper of the Year Qualifier 1st Nicole Lockhead Anderson & Gangnam Style II – 0/0 – 40.50 seconds 2nd Claudia Moore & Elando Van De Roshoeve – 0/0 – 45.20 seconds 3rd Hannah Barker & Ammanvalley Santino – 0/0 – 45.66 seconds 4th Perdita Digby & Kayleighs Star – 0/8 – 46.66 seconds

By Melanie Scott

THE weather generally is never far away from conversation. From high rainfall throughout last summer, another high rainfall plus some frequent snow and frozen spells this winter followed by more rain and very cold spells for another unusual spring saw many equestrian events cancelled. However we’ve gone from one extreme to the other with high temperatures throughout May and in sharp contrast to the last 12 months the ground has dried out very quickly. In fact it caught a lot of landowners, gardeners and farmers by surprise and there was a very small window of about 24 hours when the ground was just right to be rolled, and a lot of us missed out! But from a very wet spring the ground just hadn’t had a chance to climatise then it ended up baking hot, and the grass has gradually stopped growing. With the good weather many farmers and contractors were maximising the dry hot

spell with a lot of haylage made, good news for horse owners ahead of the winter. However now the rain has arrived it spells a warning to laminitic HORSE OWNERS 4HE mUSH OF growth in the grass causes dangerously high levels of sugar which in turn can prove a headache for owners of greedy horses. It’s not just the stereotypical hairy pony that can get laminitis, increasingly sport horses and riding horses can be struck down with this disease. Although the exact cause of laminitis is unknown, current research by The Laminitis Trust still points to the excessive intake of soluble carbohydrate (sugar, starch and fructan) as the nutritional trigger for laminitis. Therefore, it cannot be stressed enough that limiting grazing and feeding a high fibre, low starch compound are the safest ways to manage horses and ponies at risk from the condition. Remember prevention is always better than cure.



Walking on water In the fourth part of our serialisation of Terry J Williams’ book about the last drovers of Uist, we look back to a time when 200 cattle at a time would make the two-mile crossing from Benbecula to North Uist.

In a photograph from the small exhibition on droving I’d brought to the North Uist Show, a stone jetty with an open boat alongside, well loaded with several overcoated and hatted passengers – some seated, one or two standing. A handwritten caption identified the group as cattle dealers, auctioneers and a vet. They were about to leave Benbecula for North Uist. On the jetty, a dark-haired young man held the boat steady with a firm grip on the gunwale – Ewan Nicolson, like his father before him, was the North Ford ferryman. He it was who took Ian Munro and Simon and Neil Campbell – all three of whom had worked as drovers on the island in the early Sixties – across the across the water for the second part of their droving week. ‘That’s my brother,’ said Anne Burgess. There had been an article in the local press about the exhibition, and one result of that was a letter from a lady in South Uist who told me that I should contact Anne Burgess in Grimsay, the daughter of the postmaster who had operated the North Ford ferry. If the tide were in, he would row you across by boat; if it were out then he’d take you over in a pony and trap. This letter had led to an invitation to visit Anne at her home overlooking the ford. She had seen her seventieth birthday come and go and maybe a wellhidden decade more. When I arrived she was busy in the garden and bustled to settle me in her sitting room while she put on the kettle. From the window, Anne pointed out the Grimsay Post 72

Angus Nicholson and Anne Burgess lead the way as we set out to walk the North Ford, with the Atlantic and the Minch on either side

Office where she, Ewan and their sister Joan had grown up. The family home was within sight and sound of the cattle as they approached the ford from the Benbecula sale and began their trek across the sands. Joan lives in that house yet, though it’s no longer a post office. The Nicolson children were well used to crossing the sands and Anne regularly rode her pony across from Grimsay to the blacksmith in Benbecula. ‘Hello, are you in?’ A voice from the back door. ‘Now you’ll get stories,’ said Anne and introduced her cousin Angus from along the road. She was right. Short and sturdy, full of life, with a ready laugh, shining eyes, and a head of white hair, Angus had travelled the world,

returned home to Grimsay, taken up running and was still competing in marathons in his seventies. Like Anne, he had known the North Ford from childhood. They both remembered hearing the bellowing cattle as the drove left the market stance. Then the herd would come into sight as it neared the ford. ‘We would look out and the whole Oitir Mhòr [The tidal sands of the North Ford] would be full of cattle,’ said Anne. ‘Maybe two hundred at once and the buyers on horses.’ Angus remembered going out to one of the small islands in the ford with his pals, where they sat on a big stone cairn to wait for the drovers and their charges to come past. He could show me the place. We could walk the ford.

‘Would you like to?’ asked Anne, though I’m sure she could already see the answer in my face We left dry land not far from the old slipway at Gramsdale in Benbecula, where Ewan Nicolson had taken his droving passengers on board. Angus led the way, pointing northwards with his stick in the direction of Carinish, our destination. Two hours of walking lay ahead of us. To either side, like stage curtains opened wide, waited the tides of the Atlantic and the Minch. All we were missing was 200 cattle. I tried to imagine a drove on the hoof: steam rising from the jostling animals, the thud and splash of cloven hooves on hard sand and through remnant pools, the anxious cattle voices, the drovers shouting, dogs barking -


Ferryman Ewan Nicholson (second from left) prepares to take buyers across the North Ford in 1948

before the sea swept away all sign of their passing. The old photographs showed drovers carrying dealers piggyback through the water but there was none of that for us. At the first channel, Angus searched for the best crossing. He probed the sand with his stick, waded out to test the depth of water, announced that here we could cross safely. With time and tide always in mind, he allowed no hesitation, urged us on. It was off with the boots, just as Neil had said, and into the current that flowed swift and strong to the Minch. The water reached kneehigh and a bit more, flinching cold at first, then bearable enough until we reached the other side and the sun warmed away the goose bumps. I opted to keep my bare feet, Angus did the same and we walked on. Corrugated sand beneath unshod soles. A skirl of oystercatchers. A dishevelled pile of stones – a cairn, said Angus. I hadn’t expected a cairn. There had been a line of them, he said, to mark the safe route across the ford. Taller than a man. Some kept their heads above

water even at high tide. Most have disappeared, broken by storms; others are hardly distinguishable heaps, though a keen eye can still detect traces of the skill that made them. We were halfway across. Angus was pointing. Look, there on the grassy top of Eilean na h-Airidh was the cairn he had repaired. This was where he and his friends had come, running across the narrow tidal channel from Grimsay to watch the cattle pass. And there, pointing again, the gap between the two nearest islands – the crofters had shifted boulders to one side and the other by hand, leaving a level passage for carts and cattle, horses, dogs and men. We walked through. Seaweed and small stones. The boys would be sitting on the cairn as the animals crowded into the gap. The fog could roll in without warning, said Angus, and night could come on you, or you might be travelling in the early hours to catch the tide for the sales and then you couldn’t see from one cairn to the next. It was easy to become disoriented. So, in places, there was a line of stones set in the sand like

stepping stones between the cairns. You could follow these. Even more vulnerable than the cairns, almost all have sunk into the sand or been shifted out of line. Angus showed me a remnant – one, two, three, four, each with its crown of seaweed – and I wondered how it felt to be not-quite-lost out here in darkness or swirling mist, trusting this thread of stones to lead you to the next cairn, listening for the sound of creeping water. The Atlantic, when it came, would push – no doubt with some force and speed onto these sands. Meanwhile the Minch would be sneaking in from the east, fingering its way round Grimsay’s fragmented northern edge. The drovers would be wary of any dawdling and so was Angus. We chatted our way steadily towards Carinish, wearying a little now, splashing through the shallow delta-like branches of that main incoming channel. And so we entered the Bàgh Mòr – the big bay – wide of mouth with a throat full of stinking, glutinous, hungry mud. After two hours of clean sand, my feet were black to the ankles in minutes. No

matter – I had walked the North Ford. Months later, I unrolled one of the old 1959 OS maps of the island when there was still no causeway. Two roads stopped, like broken string ends, to north and south of the space named Oitir Mhòr between Benbecula and North Uist. Across that space, joining the strings, a double dotted line followed exactly the track of the cattle droves, and that of my bare feet. In the days when Ewan Nicolson ferried Ian, Neil and Simon from Gramsdale to Carinish, the North Ford crossing had been an officially recognised route, preserved here in print by the Ordnance Survey. There was more. Further dotted lines wound among the skerries and islets: Anne and her horse would have followed this one from Grimsay to Benbecula; along here her crofter neighbours would have driven their beasts to the sale in North Uist. Each of these trails held a story. This is an edited extract from Walking With Cattle: In Search of the Last Drovers of Uist by Terry J Williams, (Birlinn, £7.99) 73

machinery High specification, purpose built tanker from Hi Spec A particular feature of Hi-Spec tankers is the option to be able to have a tanker purpose designed and built to meet the customer’s specific needs. The Hi-Spec 4000 TD-R tanker, which has a capacity of 4,000 gallons (18,184 litres) and as standard comes with a sprung drawbar and features commercial sprung parabolic tandem axles, complete with steering, that are recessed into the tanker. This ensures that road width is kept as narrow as possible, but also allows for wider tyres to be fitted to minimise compaction. In this case the tanker has been specified with high speed 750/60 R30.5 BKT FL693 tyres that are ideal for intensive road use. The specific specification for this tanker includes air/ hydraulic 420x180 brakes and LED road lighting. To ensure that turnaround time is kept to a minimum, the tanker has been fitted with a hydraulically driven 11,000 litre Jurop pump and a side-mounted, hydraulically operated 8-inch turbo-fill system controlled from the cab. The tank, which is manufactured from 6-mm thick British steel, is fitted with anti-implosion rings and internal baffles. For spreading, the customer has opted for a 15m-wide Vogelsang SwingUp 4 dribble bar, which is mounted on a 4-point linkage and fitted with two Vogelsang Exacut distributors,


both with 30 outlets. All hydraulic functions are operated via electrohydraulic controls.

As a finishing touch, in order to match the customer’s tractor the tanker has been

painted in John Deere green, complete with yellow wheel rims.

New OPICO dealer for Maschio Gaspardo in the Scottish Borders OPICO Ltd is pleased to announce the appointment of A B Wight Engineering to their Maschio Gaspardo dealer network. Based on the Charlesfield Industrial Estate, St Boswells, this relatively new dealership

has a wealth of agricultural engineering experience and will sell the full Maschio Gaspardo tillage line-up of ploughs, cultivators, drills, combination drills and rotovators, as well as the extensive range of Maschio flail mowers. They are ideally

located to grow the franchise in the Scottish Borders area. Commenting Rob Immink, Maschio Gaspardo’s Sales Manager said, “A strong engineering background led Andrew Wight to establish A B Wight, five years ago. We

machinery have been impressed with the company’s enthusiasm, experience and the portfolio of farmers they deal with. Andrew’s brother Garry joined A B White last year and has a credible history of selling and servicing agricultural machinery. We couldn’t be more excited to have them on board.” Andrew Wight, Managing Director at A B Wight added, “We took on Maschio Gaspardo earlier this year to complement our existing machinery portfolio. We’ve already enjoyed second place success at our first ploughing match with the UNICO plough and are busy with requests for plough demonstrations. Garry, and the rest of our sales, service and parts team are fully up-to-speed with the Maschio product range and are ready to get the machines out for demonstration.”


machinery Landini’s new 7 Series Robo-Six tractors The Landini 7 Series RoboSix replaces the current line-up with an all-new semi-powershift transmission, upgrades to the deluxe Lounge cab, increased hydraulics performance and higher power outputs from latest-spec engines. Starting at 151hp with the Landini 7-160, the new range comprises five models with up to 206hp for draft work from the new flagship 7-230 Robo-Six. Like all models in the new line-up, this tractor also has Dual Power ‘boost’ for pto and transport operations, which takes peak power to 225hp. Unusually, this automaticallyengaged extra power feature is available on the top three models for pto applications when the tractor is stationary as well as when working in the field. Normally, tractors must be on the move to get the performance


benefits of the additional power but the 206/225hp 7-230, 191/211hp 7-220 and 181/192hp 7-200 can deploy peak power for applications such as mixing a ration in a diet feeder or powering a big slurry lagoon stirrer or pump. The new ZF-built RoboSix transmission increases the number of gear ratios available from 40x40 with the current Roboshift creep set-up to 54x27 with Robo-Six – so there are more speeds available for added flexibility within the important speed bands for different applications. This is achieved five fully robotised ranges and six powershift steps, all controlled either manually using buttons on the control ‘joystick’ or via a new ‘intelligent’ automatic shifting system designed

to more effectively extract performance and economy from the powertrain. Also, a new Stop & Action feature makes life easier for the operator, who can bring the tractor to a halt on just the brake pedals before moving off again

by releasing the brakes and applying revs. Uprated service brakes are supported by an exhaust brake fitted as standard in response to the increased towing and road travel demands placed on modern tractors.

machinery Double-U roller now available on KUHN’s range of PERFORMER deep tine-disc cultivators KUHN Farm Machinery has enhanced the versatility of its range of PERFORMER deep tine-disc cultivators by adding a new ‘Double-U’ roller to the range’s list of optional equipment. Already available on KUHN’s PROLANDER seedbed cultivator, the Double-U roller is now available on all models in the PERFORMER range, with machines available in 3, 4, 5, 6 and 7 metre working widths. The Double-U roller uses two rows of offset 600mm diameter rollers to provide 175kg/m of downward force at 12.9cm spacings. Each roller is U-shaped to provide an inverted channel which fills with soil, thereby providing good soil-soil contact: this not only eliminates soil smearing but also reduces roller wear and tear and ensures

good soil crumbling and even consolidation across the entire working width. The Double-U roller is suitable for working a range of soil types, from medium to heavy land, and is ideal for creating

seedbeds where a shallow depth of consolidation is required. The roller’s inverted U-shaped channel is also unaffected by plant residue clogging, making it ideal for use on soils with a high trash content.

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In addition to the Double-U roller, the PERFORMER is also available with KUHN’s HD-Liner 700 roller: a 700mm diameter heavy roller which uses v-shaped, notched profile rollers to provide 225kg/m of downward force.

machinery HORSCH partners with new dealers in Derbyshire and Scotland HORSCH UK has announced that it is partnering with new dealers to offer its entire range of cultivators, drills and sprayers. Kelso & Lothian Harvesters will offer the products through its depot in Kelso, Scotland while HORSCH customers in Derbyshire can now visit Alkmonton Tractors. “We are continuously developing and supporting our dealer network to ensure our customers get the high level of expertise, service and support they expect from HORSCH. We’re delighted to be working with Alkmonton Tractors and Kelso & Lothian Harvesters to deliver our latest products, such as the Pronto NT drill and Terrano GX, backed up by great support,” said Stephen Burcham, HORSCH UK general manager.

Kelso & Lothian Harvesters, a Scot JCB Group Company, works with a number of premium agricultural brands, such as JCB, to provide a wide range of machinery to customers throughout the Scottish Borders, Lothians and North Northumberland. “HORSCH is known for its high quality, wellmanufactured products and is therefore an ideal product range for us; we only sell quality kit,” says Craig Robertson, general manager at Kelso & Lothian Harvesters. “The Pronto and Sprinter drills are great products and will be popular among our customers. Sprayers are a new market for us, but I can see strong demand across the range and there’s a large market for self-propelled

sprayers in this area. HORSCH has a great range of products and we’re delighted to be working with them.”

Kelso & Lothian Harvesters has taken on a further two service engineers to support their growing business.

The new Hektor semimounted reversible plough from Amazone Designated the Hektor, the new plough range is available in 6 to 8 furrows and for tractors up to 350 HP/257 KW. The option of a 6+1 or 7+1 beam can also be specified for added flexibility. Equipped with a stepped manual furrow width adjustment from 36 to 48 cm per body and ample beam dimensions of

150 x 150 x 12 mm thick, the Hektor range has been designed to be simple in operation, and yet offer a high degree of robustness, making it ideal for use on large scale farms. Thanks to the logical, easy to do plough settings, an optimum plough profile can be achieved under any conditions and, with a point (continued on page 82)


machinery to point clearance of 100 cm and a beam height of 82 cm, the plough works blockage-free; even where high levels of crop residues prevail. The new pivot system – which connects the headstock to the plough beam – guarantees a maximum true track following and an optimum pull-line of the combination. Here, integrated as standard, is the hydraulic front furrow adjustment for an easy matching of the plough to the internal track width of the tractor wheels. Turnover cylinders, with hydraulic stop position damping, guarantee a smooth and seamless headland changeover for the plough. The large-dimensioned, 500/45 – 22.5 saddle wheel (500 mm wide, 1015 mm outer diameter) means an easy pull as well as accurate depth guidance even under the most arduous of conditions. Plus, the transport wheel is positioned well up the frame so that ploughing close to field borders or obstacles is possible. In addition, it is equipped with hydro-pneumatic dampening which protects the plough as well as increasing


both the safety and driver comfort during transport. The large contact area of the wheel minimises soil pressure and a scraper ensures that the wheel is kept clean.

For the Hektor range, overload protection is carried out either via shear bolt or, on the Hektor S, via a hydraulic stone protection system. Very high release forces ensure an enormous resistance of the shear

bolt even in hard and dry soils, whereas, for the Hektor S, which comes in either 6 or 7 furrows only, the hydraulic accumulators can be set for pressure either individually or centrally from the tractor seat.

machinery SELLARS shows its faith in the future of Scottish farming with strategic investments In a sign of its confidence of the future strength of agriculture in Scotland, SELLARS, who are one of country’s largest CLAAS machinery dealerships, is looking to the future and is planning to implement strategic investments across the business. Based at Oldmeldrum, Aberdeenshire, SELLARS operates from a total of 7 branches and employs 80 staff covering an area from the Firth of Forth to Invernessshire. The company is the main dealer for CLAAS, Lemken and Stewart in the region, in addition to representing a range of other multinational manufacturers. An important part of the business is the enviable high reputation the company has for the after-sales service and support it provides, especially during the important peak


harvesting season. This results in market leading sales of combines and forage harvesters, and a growing park of CLAAS Tractors. To further develop this aspect of the business, SELLARS has announced that it is investing in a service outlet located in West Lothian near Linlithgow, to be opened prior to the 2018 harvest season. This new outlet, to be called SELLARS Linlithgow, will benefit from being close to the M9 and other major roads, making it ideally placed to provide more localised service for customers south of the Forth. This will benefit existing customers and enable SELLARS to expand its business throughout the central belt of Scotland. In addition to this expansion and looking to the overall future corporate development of

SELLARS as a family business, the Board has also taken advantage of the company’s current financial strength to realise the opportunity to buy back a minority shareholding held by CLAAS UK.

By buying back this shareholding, SELLARS will return to being 100% locally and family owned, controlled by its senior management shareholders and the Wattie family.

5 years 0% finance available on Kuhn balers & baler- wrapper combinations KUHN Farm Machinery has announced details of its Summer 2018 finance scheme with 0% finance available over 5 years on a wide selection of

its balers and baler-wrapper combinations. The latest 0% finance deal, which runs until 31st August 2018, is available against 50%

machinery of the list price of all KUHN variable and fixed chamber balers and baler-wrapper combinations including the FB, FBP, VB, VBP and i-BIO machines. The 0% offer is available either on 5+55 monthly payments basis, or as a 1+4 annual payments basis. KUHN Finance can also offer tailored finance plans, making KUHN

equipment affordable for any farming cashflow. KUHN Finance is a partnership between KUHN Farm Machinery and De Lage Landen Leasing Limited. Further details are available by calling 0845 366 KUHN or 0845 3665846, or by visiting the KUHN Finance page at www.

Trelleborg adds two new dealers to its Trelleborg Professional Centre Tyre Network Trelleborg announces the addition of two new dealer groups to the ever-expanding Trelleborg Professional Centre (TPC) network of top-class, high-quality agricultural tyre dealers in the UK.

Joining the ranks are British Rubber Company (BRC) based in Shipley, Yorkshire and Woodton Tyres, based in Turiff, Aberdeenshire. Bruce Lauder, Senior Sales and Marketing Manager, Trelleborg

Wheel systems in the UK, commented: “We are delighted to welcome both BRC and Woodton to our TPC programme. Through this programme and its network of highly-skilled dealers, Trelleborg aims to provide the most complete, innovative and customer-focussed tyre package in the market place. We recognise the technical

complexity of the market and offer specialist services, training and advice through the TPC programme.” Tom Card, Managing Director of British Rubber Company, added: “Trelleborg is the best premium tractor tyre available – and through the TPC programme they offer enhanced


machinery after sales service, training and advice for my customers – adding value over a long term and developing partnerships through all levels. BRC are delighted to be involved in the TPC programme.” Claire Ingles, Managing Director at Woodton Tyres,

comments: “As a company we have a tremendous amount of faith in the Trelleborg brand – we see Trelleborg as our dominating premium brand – a brand we can trust and enjoy exclusivity with. Woodton Tyres are honoured to be joining the TPC programme.”

Woodton Tyres – an expanding, family-run business in the north of Scotland – offers a solution-led support service to its diverse number of agricultural tyre customers. The partnership with Trelleborg and TPC dovetails into this approach and route to market.

Currently consisting of a nationwide network of 26 dealers in the UK, the Trelleborg Professional Centre is a special partnership programme, aimed at bringing together the tyre manufacturer and specialist agricultural tyre dealers to deliver an expert, and focussed service to the end user.

JCB launches compact tracked Teleskid for agriculture A tracked version of the innovative Teleskid has been introduced by JCB to handle loading and re-handling tasks in farming and forestry where conditions underfoot are delicate or especially demanding. The Teleskid 3TS-8T is unique among compact tracked loaders in having a telescopic boom that adds to the machine’s capabilities and performance envelope. It has all the benefits of the highly manoeuvrable large platform compact tracked loader on which it is based but also the advantages that come with a telescopic boom – such as being able to load into highersided bulk trailers and spreaders, to stack and retrieve bales and vegetable boxes from a greater height, and to handle and push loose materials into deeper stockpiles. JCB’s Chief Innovation and Growth Officer Tim Burnhope said: “This is the single most innovative development of the compact tracked loader since its launch 20 years ago. The


machine lifts higher, reaches further and digs deeper than any tracked loader of this size.” The concept of a skid-steering compact loader equipped with an extending boom is already proven on the wheeled Teleskid 3TS-8W, which has similar performance figures in terms of lift height and forward reach.

However, the tracked machine manages to lift more within safe limits by dint of its greater weight – 5.7 tonnes for the 3TS-8T versus 4.4 tonnes. Rated operating capacity (35% of the tipping load) for the JCB Teleskid 3TS-8T is 732kg when the purpose-engineered monoboom is at full extension, and maximum

load-over height increases from 2.9m to 3.8m, with forward reach at ground level increasing from 1.1m to 2.25m. Between those two extremes there is sufficient forward reach to load and offload pallets, potato boxes, fertiliser bulk bags and bales from one side of a standard truck or farm trailer.

finance Buccleuch annual results reflect commitment to rural investment Buccleuch has published group financial statements for the year ending October 31, 2017. Key points include:• Buccleuch invests further in principal strategic sectors commercial property, renewable energy and hospitality and tourism. • Significant sales of land and property across rural estates. • Total comprehensive income £7.1m. Profit before tax, £4.8m. Adjusted operational loss before tax £4.8m. The Duke of Buccleuch, chairman, said: “These results reflect our ongoing strategy of investing across our three principal

strategic sectors: commercial property, renewable energy and hospitality and tourism. “We continue to review our rural assets, in line with our ambition to reduce the overall landholding of Buccleuch. We are committed to balancing economic, environmental and community considerations within our land use decision-making and where the decision is made to sell land or property, the proceeds are largely re-invested in our key strategic sectors. “These investments will make a significant contribution to economic development in the South of Scotland and create employment opportunities in these local communities.”

The Glenmuckloch Pump Storage Hydro Scheme in Upper Nithsdale, the expansion of tourism and hospitality operations at Dalkeith Country Park and the development of other renewable energy projects remain key priorities for Buccleuch. Profits before tax reported in the accounts of The MDS Estates Ltd, the parent holding company, amounted to £4.8m. However, this included profits on sale of rural properties of £9m. John Glen, chief executive officer of Buccleuch, said: “The adjusted operating loss before tax of £4.8M is a more meaningful representation of the business’s underlying trading performance this year.

“In the last year we have seen positive progress being made across our commercial property, energy and hospitality and tourism sectors; with Buccleuch Property outperforming year on year and a record 250,000 people enjoying the facilities at Dalkeith Country Park, in the last year, where we are now also employing an additional 70 people. “At the same time as increased investment within the estates, we are also reducing our overall debt levels. “We continue to invest heavily in rural Scotland and this is at a time when we will approach a postBrexit policy framework that will present some very real challenges for rural businesses.”

Reliable and affordable ferry services crucial to island rural economy NFU Scotland is pushing for the Islands (Scotland) Bill to recognise that farming and crofting is the backbone of many, if not all, island communities. The Union has welcomed the passing of Stage 3 of the Islands (Scotland) Bill and the commitment to include the creation of a “national islands plan” to set a long-term improvement strategy for our islands and their communities. Active farming and crofting not only produces food but supports many other vital island industries such as tourism and the food and drink sector. It is vital therefore in setting out a ‘national islands plan’ that agriculture is at the forefront. In addition, as highlighted at the recent evidence session of the Rural Economy & Connectivity Committee (30 May), ferry services are an essential service in securing the economic viability of the islands. There has been significant growth in 88

the use of the ferries in some areas since the introduction of Road Equivalent Tariff (RET) boosting tourism. However, recent vessel breakdowns and the ensuing ferry disruptions have highlighted how vulnerable the current ferry service is. NFU Scotland’s Argyll and Islands Regional Chairman John Dickson, who farms on the Isle of Bute said: “With farming and crofting at the heart of island life, a reliable, affordable ferry service is crucial to island economies. “Recent disruptions have strengthened our calls for the Scottish Government and Transport Scotland to accelerate the much-needed long-term investment in the vessel and port infrastructure, as identified in the Scottish Ferry Services: Ferries Plan (2013 - 2022), which set out the future of ferry services until 2022. “This investment is urgently needed to ensure that

the aspirations of the Islands (Scotland) Bill can be delivered and that farming and crofting on these islands and their rural communities can thrive.” Orkney and Shetland Regional Chairman David Scarth, who farms at Twatt on Orkney said: “For the Northern Isles, there is disappointment that Scottish Government continues to delay the introduction of the promised RET to Orkney and Shetland. In addition, there is

still the outstanding issue of introducing “fair fares” on the internal ferries within these islands. “Here, there are also issues arising from an ageing ferry fleet at a time when the prospect of introducing RET on the internal ferry network doesn’t appear to be on the radar. This leaves our most vulnerable and fragile communities paying the highest fares in Scotland and, in many cases, receiving the poorest service.”

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finance Ayr firm Sinclair Scott joins Campbell Dallas Ayr-based Sinclair Scott, a long-established independent accountancy firm stretching back more than 100 years, has joined Campbell Dallas. The deal will see all 20 staff and 2 Partners transfer to Campbell Dallas and add around £1.3m of fee income per annum. Campbell Dallas acquired Kilmarnock-based White & Co in October 2016 and is now one of the largest full-service accountancy firms in Ayrshire with a staff and Partner complement of 38. The deal with Sinclair Scott is Campbell Dallas’ first following the merger with Baldwins in October 2017, when the firm announced plans to drive growth in Scotland through a combination of acquisitions and organic expansion. Sinclair Scott provides a broad range of accountancy, advisory, tax and compliance services to a mix of owner managed businesses, community enterprises, entrepreneurs, and private individuals. The firm has a strong client base in the charities, rural, farming and healthcare sectors. Chris Horne, managing partner of Campbell Dallas said the acquisition was an exciting move for both firms: “Sinclair

Scott is a highly respected local firm with a long history of advising businesses and private clients, and we are delighted to welcome them to Campbell Dallas. The deal provides us with further scale and reach to expand our client base throughout Ayrshire and the South West of Scotland as well as building on our sectoral expertise within the medical, dental and rural sectors. It also provides our staff access to rewarding career opportunities across our growing business. Andrew Sinclair, Partner at Sinclair Scott added: “Joining Campbell Dallas presents an exciting opportunity for our clients as we can now offer a full range of advisory services together with access to specialist technical knowledge in areas such as international tax, VAT, corporate finance, banking and re-structuring. The move will also enable significant investment in IT, providing clients with access to the latest online portals and platforms that comply with HMRC’s focus on ‘Making Tax Digital’. It will remain ‘business as usual’ for our clients, many of whom have been with Sinclair Scott for several decades, but we can now offer them access to the resources of one of Scotland’s most ambitious accountancy firms.”



THEMONEYMAN How much Tax am I due? By Charlie Carnegie The one question that I have been asked far more than any other throughout my career has been ‘how much tax am I due’ if I make £X in profits and up until now that usually took about a minute or two’s quick calculation possibly on the back of an envelope or any other piece of paper close at hand. It was a simple case of deducting the Personal Allowance for the year and the tax was at 20% or some at 40% if a good year, very seldom was it any higher than that, add on some Class 2 and Class 4 National Insurance and there you had it. To this I would always say that is subject to any payments on account made towards it and also could change if averaging provides a saving. For 2017/18 this simple calculation started to become more complicated for 2 reasons, first we had the introduction of 5 years averaging for farmers which I explained in a previous article has started to produce interesting results and some significant tax savings. Secondly, Holyrood now has the power to set its own Income tax rates which for 2017/18 the only difference was that we now pay the higher rate of 40% before taxpayers south of the border.

However for this current year 2018/19 its all about to get extremely complicated as we now have 3 basic rates (previously 20%) as we have a starter rate of 19%, a basic rate of 20% and an intermediate rate of 21%, the Scottish higher rate starts at £43431 and is 41% (40% rest of UK) and the top rate of 46% (45% rest of UK) starts at £150001. The higher rate in the rest of the UK starts at £46350 and this is part of the complications in a Scottish taxpayer has say£43430 in profits from farming and another say £5000 in savings and dividends then their higher rate starts at £46350. There are many other quirks and anomalies arising from these changes, too many for this short article but from now on if I get asked the question then my answer will be, ‘leave it with me and I shall come back to you in a wee while’ as i reach for my computer to work it out for me.

Charlie Carnegie is a partner in the Perth office of Campbell Dallas and can be contacted on 01738 441888 for any further information

Hooked on hockey Claire’s comeback shows she has the world at her feet Forget swim suits and easy reads, when Claire Thompson heads to Spain in July it won’t be to kick back and relax in the sun like many of us plan to do on a summer break. Instead, she will be packing her hockey stick and sports kit as she prepares for the ultimate sporting high - to represent her country at the top level of her sport. Competing in the Hockey Masters World Cup next month will mark Claire’s incredible comeback to the sport after nearly three decades of an absence and, true to the slogan of the tournament, proves that “it’s never too late” to achieve sporting success. Masters Hockey is for those over 40 years old, with an over 60 team too. As part of the Scottish women’s over 55 squad, Claire will travel to Terrassa near Barcelona to compete in the international tournament which will be attended by 132 teams from 31 countries. It marks an incredible milestone in Claire’s sporting story, after giving up playing hockey nearly 30 years ago when she sustained a serious injury. Claire comes from a family where her parents excelled in sport – her father playing bowls and football and taught her to play tennis and supported her athletics career, and her mum played netball and table tennis ¬¬– so Claire got into sport from a young age. Unlike her parents, her sport of choice was hockey and she was a gifted player, featuring in school, town and university teams and representing her country in the Under 21s Scottish Indoor Squad. However, that all came to a crashing end when she ruptured her Anterior Cruciate Ligament – an injury that has put paid to the careers of a number of highprofile footballers - and medical professionals advised her to give up her sport. She was devastated, and although she made a full recovery and kept fitness and sport in her life, Claire returned to hockey but never at the same level again and turned

to coaching the local teams and eventually giving up the sport but playing golf and squash. Claire explained: “Golf was something to play when I retired from hockey, it just happened sooner than I expected, and during these years I was ladies captain and ladies club champion at one point. “Four years ago a friend of mine knew I had been involved in hockey when I was younger and asked if I could help with primary and high school kids in the Aberfeldy and Pitlochry area. I was delighted to help coach and there is now nearly 40 children in our Highland Perthshire Hockey Club.” That experience led her back onto the pitch and with a move to West Calder, decided to see if she could get a game and joined Livingston and West Lothian Hockey Club. Harburn Scottish Women’s Institutes member Claire continues: “Sport was my life, so I was completely devastated when my injury forced me to give up. “After a referee told me I was good enough for Masters, it planted the seed in my head. I had had such a long break from hockey that I was out of touch, I did not realise what was out there. “I’m glad I’ve got back into it, as it’s great being part of the national squad and I’m really looking forward to going to Spain.” Despite the passage of time, she’s back on form playing and showing she’s still got what it takes to reach the top of her game, but in addition to sporting skill, it takes commitment and dedication to pursue sport at a national level. To go with the national squad to Spain means taking time off work and having to raise £1200 for travelling costs, all on top of a vigorous training regime, but Claire says it will be all worthwhile for the thrill of representing her country in the tournament. “I am really chuffed to and I’m really looking forward to it. It is an honour to be part of a squad which

Most of us look forward to having a fortnight in the sun, but Claire Thompson is off to Spain to represent Scotland in the Master’s Hockey World Cup

is drawn from all over Scotland. We have the Home Countries Tournament in Swansea too, so lots to play for.” Before jetting off to Spain, Claire has a full diary of training overseen by a coach which will include playing tournaments and a strict running and core exercise programme. She’s hoping for some Scottish sunshine along the way to help her get acclimatised for Spain, where he temperatures are likely to be around 30C. All this must fit around her twin jobs - running a gourmet pet treats business and her marketing and business consultancy. Claire has also part of the Scottish Master’s squash team, which starts at 35 years old, on and off for the past 17 years. Squash was a hobby she took up as a school pupil to support her fitness levels for playing hockey. Two sports – and two Scottish caps in one season - is quite a feat. They say life begins at 40 and Claire was 42 when she was selected as part of the GB veterans of squash, heading out to Johannesburg in South Africa to compete in a tournament. Another sponsor-money raising occasion. With the squash season now over for another year, having just competed in the Home Nations

in Cardiff where the team were second, with Claire winning all her games, means her full focus is now on hockey and her World Cup commitments. A keen home baker, Claire joined the SWI last year and enjoys attending meetings at Harburn, part of the West Lothian Federation. IT’S NEVER TOO LATE “It’s never too late” is the strapline of the Exim Master’s World Cup taking place in Spain from July 27 to August 5 and that seems to sum up the Claire’s sporting story to a T. A serious sporting injury put paid to the hobby in which she excelled in her youth – she had been part of the Scottish under 21 squad – but now she’s going to represent Scotland in the team selected for the master’s Hockey World Cup. Claire hopes that her experience might encourage others to revisit a forgotten activity, sporting or otherwise. “Sport was always part of my life. It’s great being back and I’m really pleased at the opportunities that it’s presenting.” A total of 132 male and female teams, all featuring top master’s hockey players from 31 countries will compete in the World Cup. For more information see http:// 91

country woman

Linn-Anita Larsen By Linda Mellor

Country Woman Linn-Anita Larsen was born in Norway and moved to Scotland when she was seven years old. The Scottish countryside plays a valuable role her in family life and also her working life. Linn-Anita is an active mum with two boys, aged 3 and 6, and is customer service manager at Perth based Venator Pro Ltd, a company owned by her Father, Kenneth Larsen. Her countryside interests include family outings with picnics and going deer stalking with her father. “I have lived in Perth since our move from Norway in 1995, I really enjoy Perth as it is a lovely city with plenty of culture and scenery. I get outdoors as often as possible and enjoy a busy life with my two boys and our mad dog Jess the spaniel.” “The Scottish countryside is truly beautiful in all weather, as 92

a family we go for lovely walks around the county, and also enjoy cycling, picnics, camping and treks up the hills.” Linn-Anita’s favourite season is winter, “It has to be a real winter though, with lovely fluffy white snow, and so cold it makes your cheeks rosy and your nose drip. I love seeing snow fall and icicles hanging from the roof, something so magical about it. I think it must come from the Norwegian blood in me. I love layering up with hats, gloves, scarves and thick jackets. Building snowmen with my kids and having a snow ball fight in the garden.” Linn-Anita started working as customer service manager at Venator Pro three years ago. Venator Pro are the UK stockist of the Hillman brand of outdoor clothing, they also offer guided deer stalking and have recently created a new range of

seasonings and rubs. “Working in the country sports sector is new to me but I do have the best teacher for the job, my dad! I do enjoy working alongside him. Previously, I worked in male clothing retail for 11 years, and was able to transfer my retail experience and my dad taught me all about the uses of hunting clothing and accessories. I keep myself up-to-date which helps keep me in the game.” Going deer stalking and shooting gives me a great insight into the world of shooting and deer management. I enjoy taking part in all the game fairs and meeting a lot of different people and hearing about their outdoor experiences. Game fairs always have a buzz about them and that makes them fun to work at. “My partner, father in law and father are all passionate hunters, and with hunting in the

family this will be passed down to my children and hopefully will carry on for generations to come. Keeping my boys interested in the outdoors means hopefully they will always have the urge to be out in the Scottish air and enjoy the benefits of a healthier lifestyle.” “When I get a chance, I like to go out shooting with my partner or my father. Last year, I shot my first buck on an evening stalk with my father. Before I went out on my live stalk, I spent a morning on the Venator deer stalking induction designed by my dad (of course!), followed by an afternoon at the rifle range. We were delighted with my rifle target shooting, and my dad was happy to take me out on a stalk.” Within a few days of going target shooting, Linn-Anita accompanied her dad out on

country woman an evening roe buck stalk, on the Abercairny estate. “It was a lovely clear sunny night when we drove out to the estate. We parked up near the 90-acre field. It was so peaceful, all you could hear were the sounds of the birds and the tree branches creaking in the light breeze. My father and I made our way through the thick overgrown vegetation until we came to the tree line to the high tower. We climbed up the very steep ladder and settled ourselves in. I could see in every direction very clearly. We sat for around 40 mins when some does appeared in the field straight ahead of me. We knew that a buck would not be far behind. My adrenalin was starting to pulse at this point. I was sitting with the rifle perched on the ledge of the tower looking and listening when I heard a crunch and rustle from behind me in the trees and out came a buck about 50 yards from where I was sitting. I sat completely still

allowing him to come into the field a little more before I took my shot. He made his way over to the two does. He stood broad side, and my father gave me the signal to take the shot. I took the shot, and the buck fell to the ground. I caught my breath again from the excitement of shooting my first roe buck before I made my way back down the high tower. We located the buck and did a suspended gralloch from a nearby tree then I dragged the beast through the overgrown woods and back to the car. Everything was done with safety at the forefront.” Linn-Anita hopes to further her training and development and complete the DSC1 and DSC2 in the not too distant future. “I will be going out stalking again soon and hope to shoot my first red deer. But it’s not all about the shooting because I also enjoy driving out to the ground and having a look around for deer and observe the other wildlife.

Southern Belle THE NEXT TRAIN WILL BE LEAVING FROM PLATFORMS 1, 3 AND 4 Recently, I have become accustomed to “Letting The Train Take The Strain” and to be fair, it has gone quite well. With four hours to destination, I can relax, read my book and not worry about the traffic on the M6. Driving to a wee station just outside Carlisle, saves me paying for parking in the city and allows time to pick up a Costa. The first hour and a half to Newcastle is “the school train” where I enjoy people watching. The turnaround at Newcastle allows for another quick cuppa before the train leaves…..unless it has been cancelled! Using my well practised, stupid old woman look, I ask a guard for help and he points me in the direction of the next train, which isn’t going to my station but will take me to York, where I can change for Newark. So off I go. Arriving at York, The guard on the train tells all passengers heading south to change to the train on the opposite side of the bridge so I “alight” the

train, (minding the gap) and run across the bridge, bags and baggage bouncing as I go and dive onto the imminently departing train, just in time to hear the announcement that it is an electric train, there is a power cut. I must go back to the train, I have just left to go to Doncaster. “Alighting” the dead train, I head back across the bridge to find the train I left only minutes earlier, is now full and I no longer have a seat! Standing all the way to Doncaster, a freight train is now stuck on platforms 1 and 2 at Doncaster, so another half hour wait before changing back onto the original London train, which has now caught up with us!! To be fair they gave us all free water and biscuits (on day one of my new diet). Today as I write this I am on the return journey, which to date is going well so far…… and wondering why we don’t just get off and on a train without “alighting”….who says that any more??


2018 is moving so fast. I feel I’ve blinked and found myself half way through the year, it HAS mOWN AT AN ALARMING RATE (is it an age thing?). I was out stalking with Kenneth from Venator in late May, we met just before 04:00 (I love the early mornings, thankfully!) for a trip to Abercairny to look at the roe deer through the camera lens AND NOT THE RImE SCOPE 4HE light was poor, it was one of those dull mornings with low cloud and no visible sunrise, much to my disappointment, but it was a worthwhile outing to monitor a very active deer population. It’s a time when last year’s young are pushed out by the mothers to make way for the next generation. We saw lots of roe youngsters out and about, they were a joy to watch as they skipped and bucked around the fields, taking it in turns to chase one another in play. Further into the estate we spotted a solitary young fallow deer and watched it pronking (love that word!) back into the woodland cover. I love this part of my job, it is an honour to sit quietly and study the wildlife in their natural habitat, and a vital element of our ongoing outdoor education. I photographed one of Scotland’s top clay shooters, Bob Purvis at Cluny Clays, Fife. He was coaching Ranald Hutton another highly successful sportsman from another target-based sport, Ranald said, “I had achieved everything I wanted to in Archery both Domestic and International and having been in the sport for over 50 years, and fancied a change. I felt inclined to start shooting again. I’ve always loved shooting and have been fortunate enough to have experienced quality driven days, however I fancied clay shooting. My friends, Bob Purvis and Ian Hutchison have helped me reach a high standard in National Skeet and I continue to improve with Bob’s coaching. I am determined to shoot for Scotland in the Vet category this year and it’s looking more likely as the scores show. The advantage I have is the competition experience in Archery is applicable to shooting!� 94

by Linda Mellor

SCOTTISH COUNTRY LIFE Top clay shooter, 21-yearold David Mc Math from Castle Douglas hit the headlines in April with a landmark achievement in clay shooting when he won the gold medal in the men’s double trap at the Commonwealth Games, held at Gold Coast, Australia. This was David’s debut at the Games and Scotland’s firstever individual gold medal in the men’s double trap, a discipline he has been shooting for less than three years. On winning the top prize, he said, “It was a surreal moment winning the gold medal, and for a couple of days I never really grasped what I’d done.� David trained exclusively at the National Shooting Centre at Wester Jawcraig, Falkirk. The ground went through a revamp last year and offers shooters a vast choice. “We want to be all things, for all shooters,� said Shoot Ground

Manager Stewart Cumming. “We have 10 DTL ranges, 8 Skeet layouts, 3 Olympic Trap layouts, a Compak Sporting layout, 13 Sporting stands and another 6 on the way. We also offer Simulated game and have the facilities to customise the game species.� The NSC is also a National and International competition venue, some of the recent events they’ve held are: European Championships, Scottish Championships, British Opens, 3 Home Internationals, a GB Team Selection Shoot and several Commonwealth Team Selection Shoots. “During the European DTL championship, we had 400 entries over each of the four days and were stocking up the traps with 40,000 clays every night.� Stewart is no stranger to the clay shooting leader boards, FITASC home international High gun 2016, FITASC Home

International Captains Cup Winner 2017, North Area sporting champion 2018, and South Area FITASC champion 2018. In Scotland we have a great deal of shooting talent across all disciplines, and a choice of grounds. The sport openly welcomes newcomers and each ground offers expert clay shooting tuition from experienced coaches. If you want to give clay shooting a go you should consider booking a lesson with a professional. You will be given the right advice, and taught the basics, a professional coach will get you hitting the targets correctly. When I started shooting I worked with Iain MacGregor, he instilled safe shooting habits and importance of preparation and being ready to shoot. If I haven’t shot for a while I can pick up my gun and return to the core elements of shooting and be a safe shot because I worked with Iain. I’m in the processing of renewing my shotgun certificate, the local GP charged me £50. What fee have you paid? Iain MacGregor Bob Purvis http://bobpurvisshotguncoach. Venator Pro Ltd National Shooting Centre Cluny Clays http://www.clunyactivities.


The look of tweed Butler Stewart is an exclusive brand selling luxury lifestyle and shooting clothing. After working in London in the high-end retail industry founder Anna Butler had a vision of creating an own-brand company using the finest British fabric to create understated British elegance. Tweed is often associated with muddy farmers and the gentry, Anna’s aim is to help change this perception by designing beautiful, timeless garments to be worn with your everyday wardrobe. Butler Stewart’s 18th Century Heritage - Butler Stewart’s owner and designer, Anna Butler, has textiles in her family history dating back over 200 years. Anna was brought up in the Essex countryside surrounded by her ancestor’s legacy that goes back as far as the 18th century. Hundreds of years later Anna follows in the footsteps of her successful forebears. With her passion for designing and love of beautiful fabrics she sources natural fibres that are made in the UK for her exclusive luxury garments. She also uses viscose for the distinctive colourful linings in her coats, jackets, waistcoats and skirts. Here are a few ideas for you…

Ladies Waterproof Coat in greenfinch £350 Ladies Shirt in greenfinch £59 Ladies Caps £46

Flat cap in pear green £46 Check Shirt in Blue Olive £79 Country Tie £45 Christopher Waistcoat in pear green £195 Plus Fours in pear green £195 Man on left: Flat cap in bullfinch £46 Men’s Shoot Coat £396 Country Tie £45 Plus Fours in bullfinch £195 Man on right: Flat cap in pear green £46 Check Shirt in Blue Olive £79 Country Tie £45 Christopher Waistcoat in pear green £195 Plus Fours in pear green £195


RS rural

STYLE By Helen Burness


Cutting a dash in this show ring this season is the new champion of style, the Equetech Foxbury Tweed Riding Jacket. A stunning combination of olive green with a subtle brown and green over check, this jacket takes tweed and traditional showing attire and give it a fashionable update. &EATURING SLANTED mAP POCKETS WITH AN INTERNAL ZIP POCKETS CUTTOmATTERSILHOUETTEANDlNISHEDWITHASTUNNING scrumptious rich gold Equetech jacquard lining. Show off this season with style! RRP: £152.50 Colours: Green Sizes: 32 -50” 96

cars Motorists’ costs running at £162 per month - excluding cost of the car While many drivers buying a new or used car do so on finance and focus on the monthly repayments, the UK’s largest automotive servicing and repair company has revealed the average running costs that drivers should budget for over and above this. Almost six million drivers made their most recent new or used car purchase on finance (e.g. loan, lease, PCP), with the average monthly payment being £226.12 for the vehicle alone. This increases by over 70% once the monthly running costs are added in. The availability of finance options has enabled many motorists to opt for more expensive cars than they otherwise would buy, with those using finance driving cars costing nearly half as much again as those buying them outright. The average price paid upfront is £10,511, while those buying on finance opted for cars with an average value of £15,438, a difference of 47%. While one in six (16.7%) owners bought their current car - both new and used - using finance, those who paid cash should remember to factor in the depreciation of their vehicle in their cost considerations. The vehicle costs are just one aspect motorists need to be aware of, as the research shows keeping the car safe and well maintained are significant

factors in the overall running costs. In the last 12 months, car owners have spent an average £191.53 on maintenance and servicing, and an additional £159.09 on unexpected repairs or breakdowns. Fuel is the largest individual running cost, with the average driver spending £67.63 per month (£812.56 per year), a figure that is set to increase further with this month’s record price rises. Keeping their car looking good adds almost £50 a year (£4.15 per month) in cleaning costs although almost a third (30%) of drivers cut this cost out by cleaning their car themselves using only household cleaners while a further 8% of owners confess to never cleaning their car at all. Kwik Fit found that drivers are also trying to cut costs in ways which may be more expensive in the long run – nearly one in ten (8%) car owners say they have spent nothing on routine maintenance, saving money by not getting their car serviced at all. Kwik Fit’s communications director, Roger Griggs, says this could be a false economy. He said: “Regular servicing is important to ensure a car is running efficiently, and also to pick up any issues before they create long term damage. As with most things in life, prevention is usually better than cure.”

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cars Aston Martin Rapide AMR: A four-door worthy of a racing team As Aston Martin returns to Le Mans to defend its 2017 victory at the iconic 24-hour race, so the latest car in the exciting new AMR stable has been unveiled. Following hot on the heels of the DB11 AMR, Aston Martin has revealed the limited edition Rapide AMR. This production version of the concept shown at Geneva last year is limited to just 210 cars. The design of the new 205mph Rapide AMR has changed little from the concept that was shown at the Geneva motorshow in 2017, with a large and aggressive

front grille that is reminiscent of the extreme track-only Vantage AMR Pro. Meanwhile the circular daytime running lights recall the recent Zagato models. The Rapide AMR’s aerodynamics have been tuned to reduce lift while retaining a neutral balance and the extra aerodynamic bodywork such as the splitter, sills, rear diffuser and boot lid lip spoiler are all carbon fibre. The new bonnet with large ventilation inserts is also made from carbon fibre to minimise weight. At the heart of the Rapide AMR is a naturally aspirated

drivetrain that draws much of its technology and character from the potent Aston Martin Vantage GT12. Larger inlet manifolds with tuned length dual inlet

runners enhance the airflow into the 6.0-litre V12 engine and, combined with new engine and gearbox calibration, this results in an increase in power.

Jaguar E-PACE now available with adaptive suspension, AI technology and efficient 200ps petrol engine The record-breaking Jaguar E-PACE is now even more connected and comfortable. New updates for the sporty compact SUV include ‘self-learning’ Smart Settings technology, an Adaptive Dynamics suspension set-up and a cost-effective and efficient 200PS petrol engine. Launched spectacularly with the world’s furthest barrel roll by a production car, E-PACE has already achieved strong sales in a highly competitive segment and won a string of awards, including being named

as BBC TopGear Magazine’s 2017 ‘Crossover of the Year’. It’s now even more appealing and affordable with a raft of new features available. The E-PACE now features Jaguar’s self-learning technology, Smart Settings. Debuted on the all-electric I-PACE, Smart Settings learns the driver’s habits and anticipates their needs to make their life easier. The Jaguar E-PACE recognises the approaching driver, based on both a key fob and smartphone Bluetooth signal.

The vehicle will then adjust the seat, climate and infotainment

system based on the driver’s normal preference.

Volvo wins the popular vote for the best-looking cars in the UK Volvo has triumphed in the style stakes in a popular vote that ranks the premium Swedish brand first when it comes to the UK’s best-looking cars. The company has seen off all competition in a poll by CarBuyer that saw Volvo garnering more votes than Land Rover, Mercedes-Benz and Audi, and doing comfortably better than all other premium brands, which languished outside the top 10. Britain’s drivers were quick to applaud the cool, elegant Scandinavian lines of Volvo’s model range, backing up the

opinions of industry experts who have bestowed a series of top honours on the company’s latest products, including the World Car of the Year title for the XC60 midsize SUV and European Car of the Year for the XC40 compact SUV. Our design ethos produces striking, beautiful exteriors and elegant, unfussy interiors that are attractive yet eminently practical and easy to live with.” Volvo has placed a special emphasis on designing less-cluttered car interiors that make the business of driving simpler, with fewer distractions to

take the driver’s attention away from the road ahead. Volvo’s latestgeneration models have introduced the Sensus touchscreen and a voice-activated control system, eliminating the need for multiple

switches and buttons across the dashboard. They also make great use of natural materials such as wood and leather to emphasise quality, craftsmanship and sophistication. 97


Keith McCormick Major Equipment has announced the appointment of Keith McCormick as their new Scottish and North England sales representative, replacing Ivor Dobson who is retiring from the company after 14 years. Keith joins Major Equipment from Walter Watson where he was responsible for sales throughout Ireland and the UK. With an eight year tenure at Walter Watson, Keith is already a familiar face to the Scottish dealer network. “We’re delighted Keith has joined the Major team,” says Eoin Murphy, Major UK General Manager, “he brings a wealth of technical and industry knowledge and we’re very much looking forward to working with him.” Alan Watt OPICO has appointed Alan Watt as a new Territory Manager to cover Western, Central and Northern Scotland, adding further strength to the SALES TEAM REmECTING THE COMPANYS increasing customer base and portfolio of products. Alan Watt will take responsibility for all the OPICO, Sky, HE-VA, Strautmann and Maschio Gaspardo brands in this area. Commenting, Charles Bedforth, OPICO UK Sales Manager said, ‘I am delighted to have taken on such a knowledgeable and respected individual. Alan joins OPICO with a wealth of experience in the trade, most recently at Pottinger.’ Rob Whitson Bell Ingram has boosted its operation in the Highlands with the appointment of one of the sector’s most experienced professionals. Rob Whitson is to join as Partner and will take responsibility for running Bell Ingram’s offices in Inverness and Bonar Bridge. Rob, who was formally with Strutt & Parker in Inverness where he led their Rural Department, will lead on Bell Ingram’s estate management and professional work in the north of Scotland.

David Deakin The UK Hereford Cattle Society have announced the appointment of David Deakin to the position of Breed Secretary. In a statement this evening Robin Irvine, Chairman of the Society’s ruling Council commented – “Since joining the Society in 2005, David has been a major driver behind the remarkable growth in popularity that the Breed has enjoyed in recent years. His work in promoting the Breed and the Hereford Beef Brand through modern media and in building relationships along the supply chain have been key to this success. We are pleased that David has taken up the challenge of leading the Breed in the coming years.


Page Turner’s


The Green Isle of the Great Deep By Neil Gunn

Knowledge, wisdom, freedom and Highland adventure… and just a little magic

Read this book for the sheer wonder of nature captured in brilliant prose. Read it for its powerful and still hugely relevant message of the creative individual and the small Highland community rallying against state control. Whatever the reason you come to discover this work by Neil Gunn you won’t regret it. Neil Gunn was born the son of a fisherman in Caithness in 1891 just as the herring fishing was dying out and traditional Highland culture was in decline. His childhood was infused by the impact of growing unemployment and he was sent in his teenage years first to stay in Galloway with a married sister and then London where he worked as a boy clerk in the Civil Service. But the Highlands ran through his veins and although written in English, the rhythms of Gaelic flow through all 21 of the novels written over the course of his life, giving a sense of the culture he depicted. He captured the old ways in his novels but also the idealogical struggles of the time that both underpinned and resulted from the human torment of the War years and the spiritual malaise felt keenly in Western Countries. The Green Isle of the Great Deep was published in 1944 against this backdrop.

The Green Isle of the Great Deep is drawn from Gunn’s memories of his childhood on the Moray firth and recounts the magical adventures of Young Art and Old Hector. The two unlikely friends – Art only a boy of eight years – are on a poaching trip when they fall into the strong currents of a salmon pool and come close to death. As they lose consciousness they find themselves in a green and fertile land, covered with fruit trees and an abundance of fruit. They have been transported from the Highlands of their time to an alternative but familiar highland landscape. This is an ordered world and the population here is subdued and ruled over by an upper class. The fruit that surrounds them is forbidden –those who live here eat only processed food – and there is no room for the creative soul. Art does not play by the rules. He maintains his free spirit and the actions of the two friends trigger a chain of events that will change the Green Isle. The Green Isle of the Great Deep by Neil Gunn is available from Polygon (£7.99 pbk)

Profile for Athole Design & Publishing Ltd

Farming Scotland Magazine (July - August 2018)  

Farming Scotland Magazine (July - August 2018)