First Minister to Address NFU Scotland AGM

Packed programme planned for two-day Glasgow event

Scotland’s First Minister, Nicola Sturgeon, is to address delegates attending NFU Scotland’s AGM, annual dinner and conference being staged in Glasgow next month.

The First Minister’s speech will be delivered at the Radisson Blu Hotel in Glasgow on Tuesday 7 February 2017 and comes at a time of great challenges and opportunities for Scotland’s farming, food and drink sectors.

Earlier that day, voting for the positions of President and two Vice Presidential posts will take place at the Union’s council meeting, with six members contesting the election.  

The Union's conference and annual dinner will be staged at the same venue the day before (Monday 6 February).  

Conference debate will, justifiably, focus on Brexit as the UK edges closer to triggering Article 50.  The exciting conference programme will also include sessions on how innovation may provide the key to farm businesses surviving and thriving and see agricultural and environmental stakeholders map out their vision for future farm support systems post-Brexit.

Scotland’s Cabinet Secretary for Rural Economy and Connectivity, Fergus Ewing will address delegates ahead of the Union’s showcase annual dinner on Monday 6 February before joining the First Minister the following morning for a question and answer session after the First Minister’s speech.

Commenting on the prospect of an exciting event, NFU Scotland Chief Executive Scott Walker said: “We are delighted to have First Minister Nicola Sturgeon address our AGM on the second day of our annual conference event.

“Scotland’s farmers and crofters are the cornerstone of a food and drink sector justifiably lauded as one of Scotland’s economic success stories.  Those producing the raw materials for our food and drink are the crucial element of what is now the nation’s largest manufacturing sector.

“They are also the life blood of our rural economy and responsible for the beautiful countryside and environment enjoyed by millions.

“However, the next 24 months will see this Union negotiate some of the most challenging times it has ever faced in its 104-year history as we seek to capture opportunities for growth and put Scotland’s farmers and crofters on a path to profitability.

“With Brexit decisions looming and future agricultural policy in the UK and Scotland up for debate, these are exciting times for all involved in our industry and I look forward to the First Minister’s address at this key moment for our sector.”   

Notes for Editors

  • The First Minister Nicola Sturgeon will address NFU Scotland’s Council meeting at the Radisson Blu Hotel, Glasgow at 10.30am on Tuesday 7 February 2017.  Prior to the First Minister’s address, NFU Scotland’s Council will elect the Union’s President and two Vice Presidents. The Union’s conference and showcase annual dinner will be staged at the same venue the day before (Monday 6 February).
  • Six candidates will contest the Presidential and Vice Presidential elections.  Standing for President (in alphabetical order) are Allan Bowie, Rob Livesey and Andrew McCornick.  Standing for Vice President are Tom French, Martin Kennedy and Gary Mitchell.  Members of NFU Scotland’s Council – a body made up of representatives from each of the Union’s 73 branches - will select the successful candidates.  To read a short biography on each candidate and what their priorities are for the Union and Scottish agriculture click here:
  • Media interested in attending the event can email:


Contact Ruth McClean on 0131 472 4108

Date Published:

News Article No.: 11/17

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