Sustainable and integrated farming and crofting activity in the hills and uplands of Scotland: blueprint - report

Report from the Hill, Upland and Crofting Climate Change Group, one of the farmer-led groups established to develop advice and proposals for the Scottish Government. It focusses on how to cut emissions and tackle climate change, something that was re-emphasised in the updated Climate Change Plan.

3. Vision for a future agricultural support system

The HUCG envisages a future income support framework which enables, encourages and recognises farming or crofting business that carry out good agricultural activity in such a way that delivers a wide range of public benefits, including:

  • The continued but efficient production of high quality, sustainable, healthy and nutritious food
  • A thriving agricultural sector which provides employment opportunities for new entrants and the next generation, supports rural communities, and helps to sustain a wide range of (rural) subsidiary industries by maintaining critical mass
  • Climate-friendly farming thanks to optimum production efficiencies, the use of low-carbon technology, and regenerative farmland management
  • Enhanced biodiversity as a result of sustainable farm land and farm environment management to support key animal and plant species both at local farm level and at landscape scale by connecting habitats within and across farms and crofts where possible
  • Wider environment benefits including improved water quality and flood management
  • An attractive, diverse and well-maintained mosaic landscape to provide a range of public benefits including for amenity and wellbeing along with opportunities for tourism
  • Integration with other important land uses so that multiple benefits may be generated by forming important synergies within Scottish land management



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