Results from the June 2017 Scottish Agricultural Census

Statistics on farming in Scotland.

1. Main Findings

The results show that, compared with June 2016:-

Cereal area increased by 7,500 hectares (1.7 per cent) to 440,000 hectares. This was driven by an increase in the area of spring barley (up 5,000 hectares or two per cent ( Table 1a).

The area of oilseed rape increased by 3,500 hectares (11.3 per cent) to 34,000 hectares. Oilseed is mainly winter-planted, with the area of spring oilseed rape now being the lowest since current records began in 1984 ( Table 1a).

The area grown with potatoes increased by 1,800 hectares (six per cent) to 29,000 hectares. Areas of both ware and seed potatoes rose (ten and three per cent respectively) ( Table 1b).

Crops for stockfeed decreased threeper cent. The area of fruit increased by 188 hectares (ten per cent), while there was a eight per cent increase in the area of vegetables for human consumption ( Tables 1b, 2b).

The area of fallow land decreased by 10 per cent to 38,500 hectares ( Table 1c).

The total number of cattle decreased by 22,500 (1.2 per cent) to 1.78 million and there has been a longer-term decline in numbers since 1974. The number of female dairy cattle fell by 1,700 (0.6 per cent) to 275,000. The number of beef cattle decreased by 6,700 (0.9 per cent) to 704,000 ( Table 3).

The total number of sheep rose by 160,000 (two per cent) to 6.99 million, with a rise in numbers for all categories. Breeding ewe numbers increased by 43,000 (1.6 per cent) while other sheep for breeding decreased, by 11,800 (1.7 per cent). Lamb numbers rose by 94,000 (three per cent) ( Table 4).

The total number of pigs fell by 4,300 (one per cent) to 326,000. The breeding herd rose by 1,100 (3.5 per cent) over the period ( Table 5).

The poultry flock increased slightly, by 182,000 (1.3 per cent) to 14.3 million. The laying flock increased by 0.5 million (eight per cent), while the number of broilers decreased by 0.26 million (four per cent) ( Table 6).

The headcount number of people working in agriculture was 67,000, a rise of 3,600 (6 per cent) ( Table 8b).

The amount of agricultural land that was rented for one year rose, slightly, by 15,500 hectares to 1.34 million hectares, constituting 23 per cent of agricultural land ( Table 9).

There has been a decrease of 160 holdings (3 per cent) in the estimated number of holdings with tenancy agreements (excluding crofts), to 6,400 ( Tables 10 and 11).

Barley up arrow 4,400 ha
Wheat diagonal down arrow 100 ha
Oats up arrow 1,400 ha
Oilseed rape up arrow 3,500 ha
Potatoes up arrow 1,800 ha
Fruit up arrow 188 ha
Stockfeed down arrow 470 ha
Veg up arrow 1,400 ha
Fallow down arrow 4,500 ha
Cattle down arrow 22,500
Sheep up arrow 160,000
Pigs down arrow 4,300
Poultry up arrow 182,000
Workforce up arrow 3,600
Rented land up arrow 15,500 ha
Tenanted holdings down arrow 160

(diagonal arrows indicate changes of less than one per cent)

main findings



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