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Archive 2006

4 July 06
Handling farm waste-changes needed
The Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA) is hosting agricultural waste roadshows to help the farming community and its suppliers comply with new waste management controls.

The Agricultural Waste Regulations (Scotland) 2005 brought agricultural waste under the same regulatory controls as other commercial activities. The controls came into full effect on 21 January 2006, Waste Management Legislation now prohibits the uncontrolled burning of waste on farms and the use of unauthorised
farm tips.

Farms, like any other business, now have a Duty of Care to ensure that the waste they produce is disposed of safely and without harm to the environment, through licensed waste management facilities. This new legislation is intended to protect the environment and human health for the benefit of farmers and consumers. What does the regulatory change mean to you?

Many questions have been asked: Can I dispose of wastes by burning or burying them on my farm? Do I have to notify SEPA before I burn branch waste and brash? Can I use manures and slurries on farm? A number of growers are considering buying and sharing a plastics recycling bin do we have to register this activity? How long can I store waste on my farm before disposing of it? These are just some of the questions that will be answered during the road show.

Emma Taylor, area waste co-ordinator of SEPA said: "These free seminars are intended to raise awareness of the recent regulatory changes, and outline some of the ways in which farmers, supporting agencies, suppliers and the waste industry can respond positively to the challenges ahead. It will also provide a useful forum to raise any particular issues or barriers to more sustainable farm waste management in Scotland."

Events will begin with, registration: 11 am. Seminar: 11:30 am. Lunch: 1 pm.
Close 2 pm each day. The road shows will take place on:
11 July at Kelso, Springwood Hall
14 July at Stirling, Millhall Auction Mart
18 July at Dumfries Auction Mart, Dumfries
19 July at Ayr Auction Mart, Ayr
25 July, Dingwall Auction Mart, Dingwall
26 July, Inverurie, Thainstone Centre

To register please click HERE

Waste - time to change.
For registration details please contact Jean Atkinson on: 01786 452449

1 June 06
SAC Appoints New North East Beef Specialist
A new beef specialist, Ian Pritchard, is due to join Scottish Agricultural College (SAC) at its Thainstone Office, near Inverurie, on 13 June. This new post has been established by SAC to further strengthen its services to beef farmers in the north and north-east of Scotland. The move also reinforces SAC's commitment to farmers in the area.
Ian will join SAC's Beef and Sheep specialist team bringing with him a wealth of livestock experience both from his time working with MLC and latterly with Signet, where he was employed as a livestock breeding specialist. Prior to this Ian worked as a beef and sheep specialist and his understanding of enterprise costings, and the commercial and pedigree beef and sheep sectors will enhance the services that SAC offers.

30 May 06
SAC Gets New Funding For Courses In HIE Area
SAC has been awarded nearly 152,000 by the European Social Fund (ESF) and Highlands and Islands Enterprise to fund the continuation of a training project in the highlands and islands area. The renewed funding will support the project from August 2006 to July 2007.

25 May 06
Mey Selections Adds 140,000 In Premium Prices For Local Farmers
Mey Selections the new group formed to promote quality livestock from the northern parts of the Highlands has been hugely successful - way beyond expectations.  The first annual report covering five month of trading has reported a turnover of 1.2million.  Mey Selections was launched by The Prince Charles, the Duke of Rothesay in August last year aiming to boost the North Highlands economy by promoting three aspects - produce, tourism and the built environment.  Strong and increasing demand for the Mey Selections brand means that the product is in demand with Sainsbury's who were first in looking to expand the products into 98 stores and more demand coming from the service and catering industries.

27 April 06
Halkirk YFC gear up for 60th Anniversary Year
Halkirk Young Farmers Club are holding three events throughout 2006 to celebrate their 60 years in existence. The first event is an anniversary Quiz to be held on Friday 19th May at 7.30pm in the Ross Institute, Halkirk. Teams will comprise 4 people and Question Master for the evening will be Mr. James Campbell with Adjudicator, Mr. John Bremner. Question topics include Music,Sport, Agriculture and Questions on Halkirk YFC. Music and teas will follow the Quiz. Anyone interested in entering a team should contact Ellen on 01847 890180.  See Young Farmers page for other events

23 March 05
"Chelsea Tractor" tax
The Countryside Alliance has warned that higher taxes on high-emission cars and 4x4s will negatively impact rural Britain, and is likely to have a negligible effect in urban areas.

Under Gordon Brown's proposals, vehicles with high carbon emissions will be penalised with a higher tax. While many sports and estate cars will fall into this bracket, most four-wheel drive vehicles, which farmers and the rural population are dependent on in their daily lives, will also fall into this higher tax bracket.

While we welcome the concept of environmental care which the Government is trying to address, we are extremely concerned that this measure directly discriminates against rural Britain with no significant environmental impact.

As it stands, this vehicle tax 'superband' is merely paying lip service to the environmental lobby, and ignores the needs of the rural community, who put four-wheel drives to their proper use. An extra 45 on a tax bill will make no difference to those in urban areas who can fork out 50,000 on a leisure vehicle.

It will have a direct impact on farmers and rural workers who depend on their 4X4 vehicles to go about their daily business, and use them through necessity rather than choice. We are talking about people with battered four-wheel drives and real tractors rather than brand new immaculate "Chelsea tractors".

In 2000, this Government made a commitment to the rural community, promising 'rural proofing' of legislative and tax measures. Once again, they seem to have failed to do so. In his search for an eye-catching environmental initiative, the Chancellor has taken an ill-thought through approach to solving an urban problem, which will hurt hard-up rural families and businesses.

23 March 06
Net Regs
A free website offering practical advice to small businesses on their environmental obligations

14 March 06
Free Signs For Highland Land Managers!

Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH) is offering 1000 free signs and information packs to farmers and other land managers to help make access part of their day-to-day operations. The signs are examples of how to provide information for the public that's consistent with the Scottish Outdoor Access Code and are part of new help and advice on access for land managers. Activities covered on the 10 signs include lambing, young livestock, land management operations, woodland management operations, shooting, working farmyards, farm traffic, fire risk, field margins and wildlife breeding sites. Land managers can use the signs to advise visitors about activities and hazards and allow the public to decide what action they should take.

19 January 06
Caithness Farmer In Line For Biodiversity Award
Danny Miller who farms at Bilbster is one of the five finalists in line to win the NFU Scotland Farmland Biodiversity Award.  The NFU Scotland Farmland Biodiversity Award, sponsored by RSPB Scotland, was established six years ago.   The Award aims to recognise and reward farmers or crofters whose contributions have benefited priority species or habitats as defined by RSPB Scotland and the Scottish Biodiversity Strategy. Danny farms almost 1300 hectares at Wick in Caithness.  The key achievement he cites since embarking on his work towards biodiversity is the return of grey partridge to the farm, as well as increasing numbers of brown hare and huge numbers of swallows and bats.  Biodiversity Pages

Archived Caithness Farming Items 2005
Archived Caithness Farming Items 2004
Archived Caithness Farming Items 2003