Scots approve levy rise

Scottish minister Richard Lochhead has accepted the recommendation by Quality Meat Scotland to up levy rates.

The move has been welcomed by the board of QMS. Donald Biggar, chairman, said the increase, the first for eight years, would ensure the Scottish red meat industry is underpinned by a sound level of investment in marketing and promotion and improving industry efficiency.

"As an organisation we had reached a financial crossroads, faced with scaling back our activities on behalf of the Scottish red meat industry. However, today's announcement will allow QMS's marketing and promotion expenditure to return to over £2.5m and maintain industry development spend at over £1m. It will also allow QMS to continue to respond robustly to challenges such as the anti-meat lobby," he said.