Minutes of 3 August 2021 Meeting
Ken Massie, VisitScotland to be added to the attendee list.
Discussion on previous papers – draft strategy
Strategy should be up front and background material should be a separate document. Needs reordered and edited down.
In the skills development section the word build should be changed to extend
Crofting be included in section 2
Response to survey:
- 179 responses received
- Would have been good to have had more replies, especially from larger businesses, but understand some responders reluctant to disclose the COVID support they have had.
- 25-30 businesses didn’t take part as they weren’t able to provide economic information due to succession/family issues.
- Respondees tended to be new/start-ups rather than experienced companies who may be more engaged as they are looking for more support.
NFU Scotland will be submitting written response including details of a new agricultural law in Scotland following Brexit. They expressed the need for the benefits of Agritourism potentially being classed as agriculture in law to be considered as part of the actions of the strategy. Look at the potential benefits for and against.
All members to submit feedback / comments by early next week
Presentation from Thomas Streifeneder (this can be requested should you wish to see it)
- Feedback requested from several countries including South Africa, Switzerland, Italy, Austria - very positive feedback received (from those who have replied) on the impact of Agritourism.
- Scotland should utilise what makes Scotland unique e.g. Crofting, rather than just copying other countries. Using own brand food and drink products can help.
- There should also be interaction with farm workers e.g. guided tours, the working farm experience.
- We need to pull together all these good ideas.
Other points raised:
- Important to differentiate Scotland from other countries, highlight what makes Scotland stand out from our competitors to both the domestic and international market.
- There should be initiatives for Agritourism to support smaller farms and crofts.
- The definition and understanding of Agritourism needs to be clarified.
- There is good support from companies already doing Agritourism. Some businesses have a fear of entering the industry because they do not have the skills and experience
- The use of Agritourism allows some farms to be able to produce food as normal. It is also a good tool to support small farms, agriculture itself and land use.
- Agriculture is very dependent on subsidies (80% of farms would not survive without subsidies) and any proposals on Agritourism must work for the small farms/crofts as well as larger concerns
- Planning permission may be an issue.
- Need to tap into the cultural heritage and historical landscape of Scotland.
- Needs to be a benchmarking between farms and a greater connection with the food and drink recovery plan. For example, some farms offer cooking courses using traditional recipes with locally farmed produce. Green spaces, fresh air and a proven positive impact on mental health all play their part.
- Farming communities have challenges around climate change – need evidence and science on climate point of view.
- Agritourism is a tool to support crofting/farming i.e. land use. 80% in Scotland depend on subsidies and look to other countries for income.
Riddell will send out written feedback. Thomas will finish his work. Next draft will be circulated as early as possible. Final version will be ready by 26 October meeting.
Wednesday 13 October 14:00 to 15:30
Tuesday 26 October 15:00 to 16:00
Attendees on 22 September
Caroline Millar, Scottish Agritourism
Riddell Graham, VisitScotland
Robert Wilson, Wilsons Farm and Kitchen
Trevor Jonas Benson, Culinary Tourism Alliance
Neil Ross, Highlands and Islands Enterprise
Fiona Richmond, Scotland Food & Drink
Lynne MacMillan, The Crofting Commission
Raymond Macintyre, VisitScotland
Jonathan Hall, NFU Scotland
Thomas Philipp Streifeneder, P.H.D, Eurac Research
Anna Lamotte, Guardswell Farm
Ken Massie, VisitScotland
Gordon Jackson, Agriculture, SG
Julie Latto, Scottish Enterprise
Kate Dagg, South of Scotland Enterprise
Kay Wilson, Lennox of Lomond
Ailsa Currie, Belleveue Farm Tours
Lynne Veitch, SG Tourism
John Telfer, SG Tourism
Amy Budge, Julian Pace, Hans Embacher,