Economic condition of crofting: 2019 to 2022
This is a report to the Scottish Parliament as outlined in the terms of section 51 of the Crofting Reform (Scotland) Act 2010, reflecting the economic condition of crofting and the measures taken by the Scottish Ministers, the Crofting Commission and others to support crofting during 2019 to 2022.
19. National Transition Training Fund
19.1. The National Transition Training Fund (NTTF) was introduced in October 2020, to respond to the changing circumstances in the labour market brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic. The NTTF operated for two years and supported individuals who had been made redundant, or were at risk of redundancy, to retain their jobs and develop the skills required to move into sectors with the greatest potential for future growth and job opportunities. It also supported sectors affected by EU exit and the transition to net zero.
19.2. During the operation of the NTTF around 30,000 training opportunities were delivered. In its second year, with support extended to a broader range of sectors with greater emphasis on the provision of green skills, the Scottish Crofting Federation successfully bid for an award of £49,772 to deliver its Crofting Skills for Local Food project.
19.3 The Crofting Skills for Local Food project ran from July 2021 to March 2022 and offered twenty-two practical face-to-face and online courses, with 220 participants. These free courses were aimed at those aged 25 and over, and who were either unemployed or at risk of redundancy, or required upskilling and retraining. The project supported the following outcomes:
- Development of core primary and secondary production skills relevant to local food production;
- Development of knowledge and confidence in a range of marketing options and the benefits or suitability of each for a particular situation;
- The ability to develop small scale food production activities, thus improving the diversification and income generation potential of the croft;
- The opportunity to explore and implement appropriate diversification opportunities suitable to time, skills, and land, to help generate more income from primary and secondary production; and
- Provision to local communities of a greater variety and quantity of local croft produce, which is nature friendly and helps reduce the carbon impact by lowering food miles and improves community resilience and security in food supply.
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