Agriculture Reform Implementation Oversight Board


We set out in our Programme for Government the creation of an implementation board to drive forward the work of the farmer-led groups. The Agriculture Reform Implementation Oversight Board (ARIOB) has been established to support implementation of policy reform, incorporating the relevant recommendations from the farmer-led groups to:

  • cut emissions across agriculture
  • support the production of sustainable, high quality food
  • address the twin crises of climate and nature/loss of biodiversity
  • design a new system and approach

On 25 August, we launched the consultation 'Agricultural transition - first steps towards our national policy: consultation', based on the work of the suckler beef, arable, pig, dairy and hill, upland and crofting farmer-led groups. ARIOB was launched to work within government as Scotland reforms agriculture policy in the immediate and long term.

Academic Advisory Panel


The AAP was set up to support work carried out by the Agriculture Reform Implementation Oversight Board (ARIOB) by providing advice based on the available science, knowledge and evidence. The AAP meets virtually on a quarterly bases, responding to requests for input from both ARIOB and policy, and provide regular advice notes following their meetings.


The panel has two functions:

  • to provide robust evidence to support the work of the Scottish Government and the Agriculture Reform Implementation Oversight Board (ARIOB) to develop and implement policies to support agriculture in becoming more economically and environmentally sustainable
  • to provide a mechanism for testing policy proposals and ensure they are consistent with the best available science, knowledge and expertise

Scottish Government will provide policy and secretariat support to this process and schedule business in an efficient way. The AAP will also be kept appropriately sighted on minutes and developments from the ARIOB meetings. 


The panel is comprised of eleven members:

  • Professor Mathew Williams, Chief Scientific Advisor for Environment, Natural Resources and Agriculture
  • Sheila Voas, Chief Veterinary Officer for Scotland
  • Professor Lorna Dawson, James Hutton Institute
  • Professor Lee-Ann Sutherland, James Hutton Institute
  • Dr Andrew Moxey, Pareto Consulting
  • Professor Sharon Huws, Queen’s University Belfast
  • Professor Fiona Burnett, SRUC
  • Professor Davy McCracken, SRUC
  • Steven Thomson, SRUC
  • Professor Liz Baggs, University of Edinburgh
  • vacant

Read the terms of reference.


Further support is offered by the Agriculture Policy Development Group (APDG) which assists with the development of policy detail. More information is available in the minutes of 30 September 2021 and the APDG terms of reference.


  • Martin Kennedy, farmer/NFUS
  • Tim Bailey, SAOS
  • Scott Henderson, farmer
  • Adele Jones, Sustainable Food Trust
  • Marion MacCormick, Supply Chain, Scotland Food and Drink
  • Donald Mackinnon, Crofter and Chair of Scottish Crofting Federation
  • Andy McGowan, MD Scottish Pig Producers
  • Andrew Moir, farmer
  • Vicki Nash, RSPB trustee
  • Anne Rae MacDonald, farmer
  • Mark Reed, Academic with expertise in behaviour change including peatland restoration
  • Pete Ritchie, farmer and SE Link (Nourish Scotland)
  • Mike Robinson, Academic and co-chair of Farming 1.5
  • Kate Rowell, farmer, QMS and Just Transition commission
  • Claire Simonetta, farmer
  • Sarah Simpson, farmer and agricultural consultant
  • Nikki Yoxall, farmer and NatureScot



Back to top