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Leading Politicians to Drive Brexit Debate at NFU Scotland Autumn Conference

Perthshire event on 25 October to also examine Brexit preparedness at farm and supply chain level

Six days before the UK’s stated departure from the European Union, leading Scottish politicians will drive the debate on Brexit at the Union’s annual autumn conference.

Taking place at Scottish Natural Heritage’s Battleby Centre near Perth, on Friday 25 October, the conference’s opening session will feature Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Scotland, Colin Clark MP alongside the Cabinet Secretary for Government Business and Constitutional Relations, Michael Russell MSP.  They will be joined by Maeve Whyte, Director of the joint UK Union’s office in Brussels.

Other sessions planned for the jam-packed event will include business leaders discussing their sector’s plans and preparedness for Brexit.  In addition, farm-based businesses will share what they have done to build resilience and diversification into their operations in a bid to future-proof themselves.  Other confirmed speakers include:

  • Andy McGowan, President of the Scottish Association of Meat Wholesalers;
  • Jenny McKerr – Beef and sheep farmer and distiller in South Lanarkshire.
  • Peter Moss - NFUS Next Generation representative for Orkney. A beef farmer diversified into wind turbine maintenance and hot tubs.
  • Jamie Wylie – Mixed cereals, sheep and pig farmer supplying high quality genetics and generating energy from renewables.

Members can register for this free event on 0131 472 4000; Email: info@nfus.org.uk

NFU Scotland President, Andrew McCornick, who will deliver the opening address, said: “As Britain and the EU crash towards a Brexit deadline of 31 October, farmers and crofters are desperate to know on what terms will the UK leave the EU.  

“Many business decisions have already been taken in a void with no clear vision on what our future trading terms with the EU will look like.  We look to our political leaders to shed valuable light on how this will impact on farms and crofts.

“Those involved in our supply chains face the same quandary.  How do you plan when you don’t know exactly what you are planning for?  Business leaders attending this event will discuss their Brexit plans and preparations; what the impact has been to date and what the prospects look like ahead.  

“Our Brexit preparedness survey, unveiled at the Highland Show in June, revealed the stark picture that almost three-quarters of Scottish farmers and crofters had undertaken no business planning around Brexit at that time and that – ‘deal or no deal’ – only one in ten farmers and crofters were positive about post-Brexit future.

“Ongoing uncertainty around Brexit and three years of political to-ing and fro-ing has eroded the confidence of Scotland’s farmers and crofters but this conference will feature three farmers who will share what they have done to build resilience into their businesses and offer a glimpse of what they think the next five years hold.

“Facing a period of unprecedented change, this timely autumn conference aims to deliver support, answers and clarity to our members, and I urge them to sign up for what will be a hugely important event in mapping out Scottish farming’s post-Brexit future.”  Ends

Notes to Editors
  • NFUS Annual Autumn Conference will take place at Battleby Conference Centre, Redgorton, Perth, PH1 3EW on Friday 25 October.  Registration opens at 9.30am and the conference begins at 10.15am.  Lunch will be provided, and the conference will conclude at 3pm.
  • Media who wish to attend can contact media@nfus.org.uk
  • Members are invited to register for this free event by calling 0131 472 4000 or by emailing Info@nfus.org.uk 

Contact Bob Carruth on 0131 472 4006.



Author: Bob Carruth

Date Published:

News Article No.: 141/19


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