Tractor in the outer Isles



Tuesday, March 16, 2010

The Scottish Crofting Federation (SCF) have issued a clear rejection of the Scottish Government’s plans for the crofting register in their evidence to the Parliamentary Committee for Rural Affairs and Environment on the Crofting Reform Bill.

Marina Dennis, convener of the SCF crofting reform working group said, “The plans put forward by the government for the crofting register are poorly conceived and are just wrong. There seems to be little understanding of what these proposals would mean in reality. As we have already stated, the proposal to use ‘trigger points’ to force croft registration is unworkable and even appears designed to be "adversarial" as the crofting lawyer Simon Fraser put it. It will cause crofters endless delay and expense. Crofting lawyers are recognised experts in these matters and two of the most respected of them, Simon Fraser and Sir Crispin Agnew, have deplored the government's 'trigger-point' plans and supported the SCF's ideas for the register to be based on a community mapping process. We have also questioned why croft tenants are being asked to map the land over which they hold an annual lease. What other tenants have to do that? But the evidence presented to the Parliamentary Committee by the Scottish Government shows they have paid little heed and are still way out of touch”.


SCF response to the Pack interim report

Monday, March 15, 2010

Thank you for the opportunity to comment on the interim report of the Inquiry into future support for agriculture in Scotland. SCF is the only member-led organisation dedicated to promoting crofting and is the largest association of small-scale food producers in Scotland. Its mission is to safeguard and promote the rights, livelihoods and culture of crofters and their communities. Working through our membership structure we can respond authoritively at local, national and international levels on the many issues affecting crofting and crofting communities. We have presented here comments gathered from our area representatives and advisors, not in any order of priority.



Tuesday, March 09, 2010

A conference entitled ‘Marketing Meat from the Croft’ organised by the Scottish Crofting Federation (SCF) took place last week in Inverness. The purpose of the event was to bring together crofters and crofting producer groups with some of Scotland’s top meat industry experts, highlighting the opportunities and constraints in marketing beef, lamb and pork from the croft. Conference organiser Donald Murdie, Co-ordinator of SCF’s Crofting Resources Programme, said, “The great majority of output from crofts is store livestock which is sold on to lowland farmers for finishing, but the direct selling route is a way that individual crofters and producer groups can add value to their produce, especially for breeders of traditional and native breeds which are slow to grow to maturity. SCF’s ‘Scottish Crofting Produce’ trade mark is available as an additional marketing tool.”



Tuesday, March 09, 2010

Delegates from the Scottish Crofting Federation were in the north of England on the 23rd of February to attend a major meeting discussing the formation of a UK and Ireland wide Foundation For Common Land.

At the meeting held at Melmerby in Cumbria were graziers from throughout the UK and Ireland who work common land, and members of representative groups that support them. A series of short presentations at the outset of the meeting showed that in some areas, such as the Highlands and Islands, there is a strong local representative system already in place, while in other parts of the country representative groups are less developed or do not exist at all.


Iain MacKinnon comment on Brian Wilson article

Tuesday, March 09, 2010

A charaid,

In his column last week (WHFP1673) Brian Wilson highlighted Crispin Agnew's contribution to the crofting reform process at the Scottish Parliament earlier this month. Mr Agnew proposed that crofting tenure could be replaced by owner-occupancy, citing the unregulated landholding system in Ireland as a model for owner occupancy.

To read the full article please download the PDF below: