Meetings of Fergus Ewing and National Farmers Union of Scotland (NFUS): FOI release

Information request and response under the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002.

Information requested

You asked for “Details of any dates, times and minutes relating to meetings between Fergus Ewing and NFUS in (a) 2016 (b) 2017 (c) 2018”.


I enclose a copy of some of the information you requested.

Some of the information you have requested is available from the Scottish Government website, where details of Ministerial engagements, travel etc. have been published monthly for many years. You can access these lists, in spreadsheet format, by searching for “Ministerial engagements, travel” (in quotes) on the page at You can access details of Mr Ewing’s meetings on the “engagements” tab of each spreadsheet. The data for the first four months of 2016 is accessible in MS Word format at 44/Events-Engagements/MinisterialEngagements/MinisterialEngagements.

While our aim is to provide information whenever possible, in this instance we are unable to provide some of the information you have requested because an exemption under section 38 (personal information) of FOISA applies to that information. The reasons why that exemption(s) applies are explained in the Annex to this letter.

Reasons for not providing information - Annex
An exemption applies 

An exemption under section 38(1)(b) of FOISA (personal information) applies to some of the information requested because it is personal data of a third party, i.e. the names and contact details of individuals, and disclosing it would contravene the data protection principles in Article 5(1) of the General Data Protection Regulation and in section 34(1) of the Data Protection Act 2018. This exemption is not subject to the ‘public interest test’, so we are not required to consider if the public interest in disclosing the information outweighs the public interest in applying the exemption.

An exemption under section 38(2A) of FOISA (personal information) also applies, as the Cabinet Secretary receives a number of general comments on policy made in the course of correspondence about individual cases brought to his attention. As these are not part of a formal consultation, we do not have individuals’ consent to publish their views, and we therefore consider the private nature of that correspondence to be protected by the data protection principles set out in GDPR Article 5(1).

Within the attatched - "Information released":
Meetings between Fergus Ewing and NFUS (2016-18)
Note of Meeting With NFUS - Crofting 25.07.16
Note of NFUS meeting - 20.09.17,
NFUS Crofting Highland and Island Committee - 30.08.18, Letter to Barney MacAskill

About FOI
The Scottish Government is committed to publishing all information released in response to Freedom of Information requests. View all FOI responses at

FOI-19-00950 Information released


Please quote the FOI reference
Central Enquiry Unit
Phone: 0300 244 4000
The Scottish Government
St Andrews House
Regent Road

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