Sheep producers are invited to attend a special technical event in Ballater next month.
The event, which is organised by SRUC, is free to attend and takes place at Bush Farm, Crathie, on Tuesday, November 3, at 10.30am.
It will kick off with a look around Bush Farm, which is run by the Finnie family.
The farming enterprises consist of 2,400 ewes, of which 1,600 are Scottish Blackface and 800 are crosses, and 150 suckler cows.
The majority of the Blackies are kept pure with 400 being put to a Border Leicester ram to produce replacement greyface ewes.
Otherwise, Meatlinc, Suffolk and Texel rams are used to produce finished lambs, which are then sold deadweight.
At the farm, visitors to the event will hear from industry experts on issues such as health, nutrition, new technology and the cost benefits of away wintering hoggs.
SAC Consulting beef and sheep expert Kirsten Williams, who is organising the event, said: “Sheep prices have fluctuated in both live and dead markets over the last year, partly due to the EU market that is open to vulnerable exchange rates. Finished lamb prices have been below par this summer and this has dented confidence in the sector.
“As we go into autumn it is opportune to consider practical management issues and the outlook for the months ahead.
“Income and profits will depend on attention to detail, technical efficiency and using up-to-date information – these topics will be the focus of our event.”
Following the farm visit, the event will move to Crathie Hall for lunch followed by a panel discussion which is being coined ‘The Great Sheep Debate’.
Chaired by SRUC chairman Pat Machray, the panel speakers are: Quality Meat Scotland’s head of marketing Laurent Vernet; Scottish Association of Meat Wholesalers president Alan McNaughton; Moredun Foundation chairman Ian Duncan Millar and Rod Mackenzie from Muirton, Munlochy.
The event is free to attend but farmers interested in attending must book their place by calling SAC Consulting’s Turriff office on 01888 563 333.