Plans to develop a micro-abattoir for the Skye and Lochalsh region are progressing with the appointment of a project officer.
The Skye and Lochalsh Meat Supply Group has appointed Rachael Jackson – who farms at Orbost with husband Keith – to take the plans forward.
The Scottish Crofting Federation (SCF) said Mrs Jackson has been hired on an eight-month contract to bring the project towards a “shovel ready stage”.
Last year a report, carried out by Scotland’s Rural College – SRUC, recommended a group was established to bring forward the plans for a new abattoir in the area.
According to SCF, the report painted a positive picture for a micro abattoir to contract slaughter livestock for producers who would then market the meat themselves.
Mrs Jackson has been tasked with developing a funding package for the project, including obtaining estimates and identifying a site from the options identified in the SRUC report.
She will also start the ball rolling on discussions surrounding planning issues, waste management and meat inspection, and engage with other small abattoir operators in remote and island areas to determine the “optimum business structure”.
The post has been funded by Edinbane Community Company, Struan Community Trust, Highlands and Islands Enterprise and Highland Council. Additional support will be offered by MacTec (Scotland) Ltd.