NFU Scotland launches manifesto for general election

NFU Scotland has set out its priorities for the general election this year in a manifesto issued to all political parties.

The NFU Scotland Manifesto 2024 sets out specific requirements that Scottish agriculture will need to help meet its full potential. The Union is seeking clear manifesto commitments from all the main Westminster parties and is asking prospective UK parliamentary candidates to also back those asks outlined under the following five priority areas:

  • Deliver increased, ring-fenced and multi-annual funding
  • Improve producer margins to increase food security
  • Better access to skilled workers
  • Protect domestic food production in future trade deals
  • Increase fiscal incentives

Launching the Union’s manifesto at West Craigie Farm, South Queensferry on the outskirts of Edinburgh, NFU Scotland President, Martin Kennedy, said, “We need commitments from the next UK Government, and we need the full support of all prospective Scottish MPs who should all be championing the interests of Scottish agriculture.

“Covering over 74 per cent of Scotland, active farming and crofting is key to helping to meet climate and biodiversity needs. In addition to producing food of the highest quality, agriculture underpins rural communities across Scotland and is at the heart of flourishing environments.

“High-quality agricultural production is vital to the wider food and drink industry – a sector that’s worth over £16 billion to the Scottish economy, employs over 130,000 people, and supports Scotland’s national reputation on the world stage.

“It’s as good as certain there will be a general election this year to create the next UK Government. While most policy, legislation and regulation which directly and indirectly relates to our interests in the future prosperity of Scottish agriculture is devolved to Holyrood and the Scottish Government, our attention and influence must also be fixed on Westminster.

“There are fundamental issues that are reserved to the UK Government, such as trade, migration, and internal market issues. Top of the list is the fundamental need to deliver increased, ring-fenced and multi-annual funding.

“The next parliamentary term will be pivotal for Scotland’s farmers and crofters. This NFU Scotland General Election Manifesto 2024 sets out specific commitments that Scottish agriculture requires to meet its full potential. Securing these commitments from the next UK Government would take us a long way towards our goal of a sustainable and profitable future for Scottish agriculture.”

NFU Scotland is holding an event for MPs at Westminster on 16 April and will also be inviting all parties to a hustings event over the next few months to discuss and debate the contents of its manifesto asks. Details of that hustings event will be shared more widely in due course.

NFU Scotland’s General Election Manifesto 2024 is available here

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