Entries open for inaugural farm award
The NFU Mutual Tidy Farm Awards will come to Scotland for the first time this year, after being successfully launched in Northern Ireland in 2018 and Wales in 2019.
Entries for this year’s awards will open on February 3, promoting farm safety and offering cash prizes to farmers who have addressed common hazards on their farms.
The winner of Scotland’s tidiest farm will be awarded £1000, with £500 and £250 awarded to the second and third place entries.
Farmers can nominate themselves, or local people can nominate a farm in their area. Family members and friends can also make nominations.
Entries will be judged on eight submitted photographs which show how common farm hazards have been addressed to reduce the risk of an accident.
The photos should show how the farmer: Separates their farm and home; Stores their vehicles, machinery and equipment; Uses signs and mark routes for delivery; Fences off dangerous areas; Minimises the risks of slips, trips and falls.
Details of the award and how to apply are on a dedicated page on NFU Mutual’s website:
Entries close on March 23 and the winners will be announced at an awards ceremony taking place at the Royal Highland Show in June.
The Tidy Farm Awards were set up to recognise farmers who have really gone the extra mile to ensure a safe, tidy and healthy working environment," said Martin Malone, NFU Mutual Manager for Scotland.
“After the competition saw a positive response in Wales and Northern Ireland, we were keen to extend it to Scotland in 2020 and take the opportunity to share vital farm safety messages.
"As a mutual insurer which is closely connected with many of Scotland's farms, we are all too aware of the heartbreak farm accidents cause. "Because most farms are homes as well as a workplace, we're running this award scheme as a reminder that safety should be front of mind for the whole farming family."
Stephanie Berkeley, who manages the Farm Safety Foundation, said: “Farming and food production play a crucial role in the life and economy of Scotland, but every year we have to reluctantly report that agriculture still has the poorest safety record of any occupation here.
"There are no signs of it improving and, in fact, it appears to be getting worse.
“Thirteen people lost their lives on Scotland’s farms in 2018/19 – up from five the previous year and we all need to recognise this and do something about it.
"All too often, these life-changing and life-ending accidents are avoidable.
"We know there are farms out there operating safely and efficiently and it’s time to celebrate them and reward those who have created a safe and tidy farm.
"The Foundation is proud to be involved with these awards and help in the efforts to raise awareness of farm safety and improve the health and safety of Scotland’s farming community.”
The award judges are: Stephanie Berkeley, Farm Safety Foundation; Martin Malone, NFU Mutual Manager for Scotland; David Pendlington, Regional Manager for NFU Mutual Risk Management Services Scotland; Allan Bowie, past president of NFU Scotland.