The organisers of two high profile awards for livestock farmers, are urging farmers and others involved in the industry to nominate farms they feel are worthy of receiving the accolades this year.
The AgriScot Scotch Beef Farm of the Year and AgriScot Scottish Sheep Farm of the Year awards, sponsored by Thorntons Solicitors and supported by Quality Meat Scotland (QMS), set out to find, and reward, Scottish farms which exemplify the best in beef cattle and sheep production.
The winners will each receive a £500 cheque plus a £250 voucher to celebrate their success at a Scotch Beef Club restaurant – the club run by QMS which has around 300 members committed to serving top quality Scotch Beef. The awards will be presented at AgriScot at Ingliston on Wednesday, November 15.
Drumdow Farm, Stranraer, farmed by Robert Parker, was announced as AgriScot Scotch Beef Farm of the Year in 2016. Drumdow runs 170 Hereford and Aberdeen Angus cross cows and calves (otherwise known as Black Baldies) and a further 40 Hereford and Angus cross bulled heifers.
“We were surprised and flattered to be nominated for the award last year,” said Mr Parker, who farms in partnership with his wife Eileen. “I would definitely encourage others to apply and play a part in promoting Scotch Beef and Scotch Lamb.”
His support of the award is mirrored by Graham Lofthouse from Bankhouse Farm near Stow, which won Scottish Sheep Farm of the Year in 2016. Mr Lofthouse said: “These awards are a great way to promote the efforts of farmers in Scotland help build confidence in the future for all those working in the Scottish red meat industry.”
Andrew Moir, AgriScot Chairman encouraged beef and sheep farmers across Scotland to nominate someone they know, or apply themselves for either award. He said: “The AgriScot directors take great pride in our dairy, beef and sheep farm awards. We believe the awards are a tremendous opportunity to celebrate all that is good in Scottish agriculture.”
Douglas Bell, Head of Industry Development with QMS, added: “These awards help to raise the profile of the dedication and passion of the cattle and sheep farmers who work hard to produce top-quality Scotch Beef PGI and Scotch Lamb PGI. It also provides an excellent platform for our quality assured farm businesses to champion the fantastic stock management skills our industry is renowned for.”
Kenneth Mackay, partner in the Land and Rural Business team Thorntons Solicitors, said:: “We are proud to be sponsors of both the awards. Agriscot are keen to recognise all elements of the agricultural sector and we are delighted to be able to help them achieve that goal. We are looking forward to receiving lots of entries from across Scotland for both categories in 2017.”
Farmers are encouraged to either apply themselves, or nominate other beef or sheep producers that they feel are deserving of the title ‘AgriScot Scotch Beef Farm of the Year’ or ‘AgriScot Scottish Sheep Farm of the Year’.
Those who work as suppliers of services or products to the industry, from vets to feed manufacturers, are also encouraged to nominate customers who are doing a great job as well as the many others involved in the production chain such as processors, hauliers and auction markets.
To nominate a farm for either award, email the details of the farms which you feel are doing a great job producing Scotch Beef and Scotch Lamb to firstname.lastname@example.org