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NFU Scotland Meet with MSPs to Discuss Members Needs Leading up to Brexit

NFUS President and Vice President hold cross-party meetings at Holyrood

Representatives of NFU Scotland’s Presidential team have been holding cross-party talks at Holyrood on what Scotland’s farmers and crofters want to secure from the Brexit process.

President Andrew McCornick and Vice President Martin Kennedy were joined by Director of Policy Jonnie Hall and Political Affairs Manager Clare Slipper as they met with Green, Conservative, and SNP MSPs today.

Following Cabinet Secretary for Rural Economy and Connectivity Fergus Ewing’s welcome statement on a ‘stabilisation plan’ for CAP payments last week, NFU Scotland will use this platform to push for further, longer-term stability by further dialogue on how farming and crofting will be supported after the UK leaves the EU.

Today’s meetings come a week after NFU Scotland representatives spent a day in Westminster meeting UK agricultural spokespeople where the same key messages were highlighted – underlining the vital role that both parliaments and governments will play in securing a good deal for Scottish farming and crofting.

Speaking at the Scottish Parliament, President Andrew McCornick said: “Last week the Cabinet Secretary recognised the need for stability. While political wrangling is holding up progress with the Brexit negotiations, stability is badly needed in these uncertain times for Scottish farmers and crofters.

“NFU Scotland is pleased to have strong links with parliamentarians in both the Scottish and the Westminster parliaments and in these testing times, it is even more important that we spend time outlining our key concerns and position as the shape of the Brexit negotiations evolve. Equally, we need decision-makers from both legislatures to work together to find consensus on an outcome that will suit Scottish food producers.

“The Union is currently consulting its members on what they want a re-drawn, post-Brexit agricultural policy to look like, and today we have engaged MSPs on how this new policy, delivered by Scottish Government, can be developed to support profitable, sustainable farming and crofting in Scotland, utilising a suite of productivity and environmental measures.

“There is no doubt that Brexit represents one of the biggest challenges to the farming and crofting sectors. However, Brexit also presents a new and important opportunity to replace elements of EU agricultural regulation that are bureaucratic, ineffective or ill-tailored to farming conditions in the UK and Scotland. Today we hope to continue the positive discussions we started with UK policy-makers with their Scottish counterparts as we begin the process of identifying areas of regulation which can be done so much better.”  

Notes to the Editor


Ends

Contact Douglas Ross on 0131 472 4108

Author: Douglas Ross

Date Published:

News Article No.: 136/17


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