Two new working groups tasked with recommending ways farmers and crofters can reduce their greenhouse gas emissions have been announced by the Scottish Government.
The farmer-led groups – one for the dairy sector and the other for the hill, upland and crofting sectors – are in addition to previously announced groups for the arable, beef and pig sectors.
The dairy group will be chaired by Jackie McCreery who runs a mixed dairy and arable farm in East Lothian with her husband Simon and is also a director of the Royal Highland and Agricultural Society of Scotland and the Royal Highland Education Trust.
The hill, upland and crofting group (HUCG) will be co-chaired by Aberfeldy farmer and NFU Scotland vice-president Martin Kennedy and Sutherland farmer Joyce Campbell who chairs the Scottish Government’s Women in Agriculture taskforce.
“Setting up these groups is a programme for government commitment and they will help to reduce emissions and tackle climate change, which has long been a priority for Scotland, shown in our world-leading, ambitious targets,” said Rural Economy Secretary Fergus Ewing.
“All three chairs will relish the opportunity to work together and identify practical solutions to meet our goals. I look forward to seeing their outputs in the near future.
“We know there is a lot of work to be done. Work will begin right away as we come together to develop a strategy to reach our ambitious targets.”
The suckler beef climate group, chaired by former NFU president Jim Walker, has already published its recommendations, which include proposals for a new support scheme to help the beef sector reduce its climate impact and boost its efficiency.
The new proposed suckler beef climate scheme focuses on four areas – production-based efficiencies, soil health, grassland and grazing management, and nutrient management.