Vital in the fight to tackle climate change, peat covers more than 20% of Scotland and is crucial for water quality, richly diverse landscapes, slowing floods and wildfires, sustaining rural jobs and storing carbon.

An evaluation report - 'Women in Agriculture Practical Training Fund 2021-2022: evaluation report' - has been published by Scottish Government. 

An industry-led strategy which aims for a 25% increase in turnover for Scotland’s food and drink sector by 2028 has been published.

The Scottish Government has published its first steps towards developing just transition plans for three key sectors of the Scottish economy, with discussion papers published for Built Environment and Construction, Land Use and Agriculture, and Transport.

New conditions for farming support payments will be introduced from 2025, to help more of Scotland’s farmers and crofters cut emissions and help tackle climate change.

The criteria will also support farmers and crofters to meet more of our food needs sustainably, and farm and croft while working to protect nature.

From 2025 farmers and crofters will be required to adopt the following practices to qualify for the payment:

The Community Led Local Development (CLLD) fund for rural Ayrshire and the islands has just launched for its second year. 

Gaelic projects aimed at increasing education provision and the use of innovative technologies are to receive a share of £4 million funding.

Five initiatives have been awarded funding as part of the Gaelic Capital Fund for 2023-24, including the development of the world’s first indigenous language virtual immersive hub on Islay. The new hub will utilise state-of-the-art technology, including virtual, immersive and mixed reality, as part of a unique Gaelic learning experience. Phase one of the project is expected to be completed in October this year.

New legislation will create the tools to tackle waste and increase reuse and recycling rates.

The Circular Economy Bill will give Ministers powers to:

Participants in a programme designed to encourage new entrants into farming have commented on its successes.

An evaluation of the Scottish Government’s Starter Farm Initiative shows that it has provided opportunities to run a farm business, and valuable skills and experience to enable participants secure future tenancies and further their agricultural careers.

A strategy to make Scotland one of the most innovative small countries in the world has been published.

The National Innovation Strategy sets out plans to align Scotland with European leaders such as Denmark, Finland and Norway over the next decade by placing innovation at the heart of the economy.

It outlines new approaches to develop world leading excellence in key sectors – turning research into successful products and businesses, encouraging more businesses to innovate, and improve productivity while maximising targeted investment from Government and industry.