Extra funding for Scottish livestock
Quality Meat Scotland (QMS) has welcomed the announcement by the Scottish Government that its assurance schemes fees will now be eligible for support under the Scottish Rural Development Programme (SRDP).
The Scottish Government confirmed that animal welfare measures and three quality assurance schemes have been added to the SRDP where farmers in the QMS Cattle and Sheep and the QMS Pigs schemes will be able to claim support to cover 50% of the membership fees up to a maximum of £150 per scheme per year.
QMS head of industry development Andy McGowan said: “This is good news for the industry as it offers practical assistance which will reach a great number of farmers, and should ensure their continued support for Scotland’s red meat assurance schemes.”
He added: “It’s good to see government support going to ensure Scotland’s farmers find their market and our country’s reputation for traceability and welfare standards remain second to none.”
The announcement was made after European approval was secured where the programmes will form part of Land Managers Options (LMOs) which will be available this year.
Farmers can claim up to a maximum total allowance for Land Management Contracts Menu Scheme and LMO (including LMO Animal Welfare), dependent on the size of their holding.
Richard Lochhead, cabinet secretary for rural affairs, said: “I am delighted that the Commission has approved this change to SRDP, which, in the current economic climate, will help farmers ensure that their livestock is kept in the best of health.
“The new Animal Welfare Measure has few equivalent schemes across Europe and we feel that its welfare-focused approach and specific actions on improving biosecurity will be of enormous benefits to those who keep livestock.”
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