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North-east farmers urged to respond to short-life survey on labour crisis

By David Porter

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Survey responses are being sought as soon as possible ahead of the call for evidence closing
Survey responses are being sought as soon as possible ahead of the call for evidence closing

NFU Scotland is calling on farmers to fill out a short-life survey on the well documented labour crisis in the industry ahead of its response to a UK Government call for evidence, that closes at the end of next week.

The Union has recently surveyed horticultural members on availability of seasonal migrant labour and want to expand this out to availability of both permanent and seasonal staff across all farming sectors, including pigs, poultry and dairy.

The survey, which will take less than five minutes to complete, is at: https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/37ZF3PG

The short-life survey was launched by NFU Scotland president Martin Kennedy when he participated in a labour crisis webinar, hosted by NFU Scotland’s East Central Region on Thursday evening (30 September).

At the event, more than 70 members heard from NFU England and Wales, the Road Haulage Association, Scotland Food & Drink and the Scottish Tourism Alliance on the growing labour crisis across all parts of the farming, food and tourism sectors.

Policy manager David Michie said: “The shortfall in both permanent and seasonal workers across Scottish agriculture is at crisis level.

“A recent survey has already identified that, for our horticultural members, seasonal staffing levels are 20 percent below where they need to be.

"We are also hearing, on a daily basis, problems being encountered on pig, poultry and dairy farms in securing permanent staff.

“By creating this week-long short-life survey, that will take only minutes to complete, we aim to provide a robust response to a UK government call for evidence that closes at the end of next week.

“Responses to this survey will not only provide us with hard evidence to lobby the UK Government, but they will also help when we lobby Scottish government and talk to industry, and labour, education, and skills providers.” Ends

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