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President's Blog - 23 January 2019

With the NFU Scotland Conference, AGM and Annual Dinner fast approaching, President Andrew McCornick sets out the reasons why he believes it is a must attend for any member and the highlight of the NFU Scotland events calendar.

It’s that time of year again, time for our Conference, AGM and Annual Dinner, and I for one couldn’t be more excited. What a fantastic line up we have for everyone who is planning to join us at the Radisson Blu in Glasgow on Thursday 7 and Friday 8 February.

Every year the event is great value for money but this year we have a real show stopper of a programme, which includes Davy McCracken from SRUC, Alastair MacGugan and Francesca Osowska from Scottish National Heritage. In an international flavour we will have speakers representing France and New Zealand and NFU Scotland farmer members will also be sharing some of the challenges they face in their businesses. Although still to be confirmed, we expect a Scottish Government Minister to join the panel for Thursday afternoon.

This is all before we get to the dinner, which is once again promising to be another fantastic celebration of the amazing produce we, as Scottish farmers and crofters, are responsible for.

A special treat for those attending the dinner will be one of the biggest stars on the Scottish comedy circuit, and full time farmer, Jim Smith will be providing the after dinner entertainment with his stories and jokes from his life on the farm.

The Friday sees the serious business of electing two Vice Presidents to represent the Union, not only in Scotland but in Westminster and Brussels. Having sat as Vice President myself for two years and then worked so closely with my Vice Presidents over the last few years, I can safely vouch for what an important and intense role it is.

I am looking forward to sharing the stage with my colleagues from English, Welsh and Ulster farming union, as we outline our visions for future farming policies in the UK.

It is also, always a pleasure to welcome back the Cabinet Secretary for Rural Economy Fergus Ewing MSP to speak to our members and to outline his vision for Scottish agriculture in the short and long term.

Never before has there been such a need for Scottish farmers, crofters and growers to be properly represented and to have their voices heard. The Conference is the perfect opportunity for NFU Scotland member to meet your representatives and feed your views into us.

Members travel from all over the country, from every type of farm and croft, to join us at our annual celebration, so for any members who are on the fence about whether this event is for them let me assure you… it is!

With just over two weeks until the event, now is the best time to book in for a great couple of days of interesting discussion, great food and drink and maybe even some late night drams with likeminded colleagues.

To book, call the NFUS office on 0131 472 4000.

Author: Andrew McCornick

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About The Author

Andrew McCornick

Andrew, who is married with three sons and a daughter, was born and brought up on a dairy farm in Wigtown. Andrew and wife Janice farm their 230+ ha unit with 160 suckler cows and 600 breeding ewes with a small herd of pedigree Charolais cattle. Andrew's sons farm a nearby tenanted unit which frequently provides replacement breeding stock for Barnbackle. For as long as Andrew can remember, he has been a member of the Union, and got more involved when the consultation for Nithsdale NVZ came out. From there he went onto become vice chairman of the Dumfries branch, and then onto his previous role of Regional Board Chairman for Dumfries and Galloway. He also sat on the LFASS committee. Andrew was elected Vice President in February 2015.

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