NFUS appeals to Holyrood

NFU Scotland is taking its fight for compensation back to the Scottish government following disappointment at Westminster.

The Union met secretary of state Hilary Benn MP earlier this week to ask for compensation for the Scottish livestock industry but the minister refused to give compensation to Scotland's farmers for the FMD outbreak.

NFU Scotland president, Jim McLaren, has now written to Richard Lochhead MSP, cabinet secretary for rural affairs and the environment, outlining the extent of the problem in the hope that the Scottish government will provide a rescue package for Scotland's farmers.

Jim McLaren, said: "Farmers are down to earth people and they have an inherent sense of fair play. It is obvious to us all that Westminster has a responsibility to rectify the financial damage caused by the outbreak.

"Sadly it is now becoming obvious that they are refusing to face up to that responsibility.

"We have no time left to wait for the political wrangling to be played out and neither do we wish to be embroiled in it. Farmers do not have the luxury of time. Urgent financial intervention is needed if the Scottish livestock industry is to have a future.

"For this reason, I have written to Richard Lochhead asking for the assistance of the Scottish Government. I have reiterated the predicament facing the industry and the level of funding required and very much hope that the Scottish Government can once again deliver where their London colleagues have failed.

"The Scottish Government has already stepped in with the Sheep Welfare Scheme funding package and it is vital that they act again to save large parts of rural Scotland from financial oblivion."