Around 100 people took part in the first meeting of the new Nithsdale Monitor Farm.

The Monitor Farms initiative aims to help improve the productivity, profitability and sustainability of Scottish farm businesses. It is being run jointly by Quality Meat Scotland (QMS) and AHDB Cereals & Oilseeds. Nine new Monitor Farms are hosting open meetings, with events kicking off on 26 January and running until 6 March 2017.

The Orkney Fisheries Local Action Group (FLAG) has awarded funding to investigate the development of an innovative piece of fishing gear.

A three-year post will be created by the Green Fishery Development Strategist project. The post-holder will look into the production of equipment for the sector which will help increase selectivity on the sea bed, helping sustain the fisheries industry.

Lochaber Monitor Farm meeting

The first Lochaber Monitor Farm Meeting is taking place on Thursday 26 January at Strone Farm, and will be hosted by Chris Cameron. Lunch and afternoon session is at Mooring Hotel, lunch will be provided.

The first meeting will cover:

Nine new Monitor Farms across the country will be opening their gates to local farming communities in the coming weeks.

The objective of the Monitor Farm Scotland programme is to help improve the productivity, profitability and sustainability of farm businesses through practical demonstrations, the sharing of best practice and the group approach to addressing industry issues.

A new agricultural EIP-AGRI Focus Group on benchmarking draws attention to the benefits and makes a number of recommendations for improvements.

Benchmarking is finding out how you are doing compared to other similar businesses and using this information to improve. For farmers this can include comparing data on feed costs, herd health, crop yields and so on.

The deadline for applications to the Knowledge Transfer and Innovation Fund (KTIF) is Thursday 2 February 2017.

KTIF is designed to support projects that increase farmers’ skills and knowledge by delivering training, coaching, courses and farm visits, and by supporting on-the-ground improvements in competitiveness, efficiency and sustainability.

A €2 million European Union (EU) project to increase lamb survival rates, funded under Horizon 2020, has been announced.

Scottish farmers and researchers will work with people in Spain, Romania, Italy, France, Ireland  and Turkey to reduce lamb deaths.

Between 2 to 6 million lambs in the UK die every year before they are three days old.[1] 

From rural start-ups to Scotland's favourite established businesses, 100 rural businesses are announced as finalists in the 2017 Scottish Rural Awards.  


The annual Scottish Rural Awards are the ultimate benchmark of success in Scotland's countryside, highlighting the enterprise, skill and innovation of those who live and work in rural areas.

Are you planning on doing any agri-environmental management in 2017?

This could be part of an Agri-Environment Climate Scheme (AECS) scheme, a greening measure, or just a desire to do something different. Want to know if your management makes a difference? Soil Association Scotland can help you find out! 

Soil Association Scotland's 'Future Farming Scotland' programme has won one of RSPB's prestigious Nature of Scotland Awards.

At the recent Nature of Scotland Awards ceremony, the 'Future Farming Scotland' programme took home the prize for the 'Food and Farming' category.