27 April 2015 | Online since 2003



28 May 2014|News

Scottish farmers voice concern over job cuts


Scotland’s growers have voiced their concern at the impact that planned job cuts may have on the nation’s invaluable research and development effort.

Farmers on NFU Scotland’s Combinable Crops committee, and working groups for Potatoes and Soft Fruit/Field Vegetables have always attached great value to the work carried out by the James Hutton Institute - the interdisciplinary scientific research institute created from the amalgamation of the Scottish Crop Research Institute (SCRI) and the Macaulay Land Use Research Institute (MLURI) in 2011.

However, the James Hutton Institute, based in Invergowrie and Aberdeen, is to cut up to 70 jobs as part of a voluntary redundancy scheme aimed at reducing costs.

In recent days, the Union’s committees and working groups have all discussed the matter and are seeking reassurances that vital research effort in key areas will be unaffected.

Union representatives are scheduled to meet with JHI Chief Executive Ian Gordon next week to discuss the matter.

NFU Scotland Policy Manager Peter Loggie said: “The JHI is famed for its world-leading research on barley, potatoes and soft fruit but behind that is hugely valuable generic work for growers on sustainable farming systems, soils, nematodes, plant pests and diseases that are all vitally important to maintaining and enhancing farm efficiency.

“The JHI has a crucial role to play if food production is going to keep pace with population growth while at the same time being challenged by issues such as climate change, legislation, input costs, plant protection product availability and the loss of productive farm land to urbanisation.”

Combinable Crops Chairman Andrew Moir added: “There is a well-documented correlation between research being scaled back and agricultural production tailing off. The dramatic fall in R&D expenditure across Europe since the 1980’s will have contributed to the yield plateau that growers are now experiencing.

“Growers want to see the skills, knowledge and expertise at JHI retained and strengthened to the benefit of our own agricultural industry and beyond.”

Chairman of the Union’s Soft Fruit and Field Vegetable Working Group, Peter Thomson said: "I have spoken to the Chief Executive of JHI in the past few days and have an appreciation of the budgetary pressures that the institute faces. However, it has a world-leading position in basic agricultural research for growers – whether that be cereals, potatoes or soft fruit – and a reputation for delivering valuable work on varieties and plant diseases back to growers.

“While much of that work benefits Scottish growers, such is the value of the research taking place at JHI, that its reach and impact is worldwide. That is a real asset and something worth protecting.”

Download




Comments


No comments posted yet. Be the first to post a comment

To post comment without approval login or register

Display name

Please enter your name

Email (optional)
Comment

Please enter your comment

Post Comment

Your comment submitted successfully.Please wait for admin approval.

Some error on your process.Please try one more time.



Jobs


7 April 2015
Lead Commissioning Manager
Ensure optimal operation and planning of wind farm capacity during the commissioning period until transfer to O&M....

16 April 2015
Part time Assistant - 20 hours per week (Working on a rota basis)
Chase Farm Shop & Café. Part time Assistant - 20 hours per week (Working on a rota basis)....

8 April 2015
Workshop Service Engineer - Wymondham
They specialise in selling new and used JCB machinery into the Construction, Agriculture and Industrial industries and then a...

13 April 2015
Agri-Retail Adviser (Food Chain)
An understanding of Farm Assurance schemes and / or organic farming practices would be desirable. Agri-Retail, Food Chain, Ag...

9 April 2015
Mulit Drop Package Car Driver
Lower Farm Road , Moulton Business Park , Moulton, Northampton . UPS PACKAGE CAR DRIVER 40 Hour Contract – JOB SUMMARY....



Top stories you may have missed
10 April 2015 | Agri Safety

The permanent eradication of Bovine Viral Diarrhoea [BVD] in Scottish cattl...


10 April 2015 | Dairy

The abolition of milk quotas in Europe on 1st April has resulted in a numbe...


10 April 2015 | Cattle

The top 14 milk producing countries in Europe will increase their productio...


10 April 2015 | News

Matt Ware is the NFU's head of government and parliamentary affairs, based ...


10 April 2015 | Arable

There is a 'desperate need' to improve farmgate returns given low incomes a...


9 April 2015 | Arable

Rapid stem extension, after a slow start to spring, is likely to create spl...


9 April 2015 | Finance

The time has come for landlords to expect to see reductions in farm rents, ...


8 April 2015 | Cattle

Cogent’s reputation as a source of the highest calibre sires has been enhan...


8 April 2015 | Arable

The spread of exotic and aggressive strains of a plant fungus is presenting...


7 April 2015 | Animal Health

The FSA’s new Food Crime Unit wants the industry to share information, some...