Results from the Scottish Agricultural Census: June 2023

Final results from the 2023 June Agricultural Census on land use, crop areas, livestock and the number of people working on agricultural holdings. Estimates for 2022 are published in the supporting documents.

This document is part of a collection

Number of regular employees increases while seasonal employees remain stable compared with five year average 

The total agricultural workforce is estimated to be around 66,800 workers. In June 2023, there were around 31,400 regular and seasonal employees working in agriculture. This is an increase of eight per cent compared with the five year average. The increase was driven by a rise in the number of working business partners, particularly female working family and business partners.

The number of casual and seasonal workers remained stable compared to the five year average, at 8,300 workers. Due to the timing of data collection these numbers may not capture all seasonal working in Scottish agriculture, particularly those involved in the harvest of soft fruits.

This year, data were collected on the number of EU and non-EU migrant workers. Non-EU workers accounted for 70 per cent of the migrant labour person working days whereas EU workers only contributed towards 30 per cent of the migrant labour person working days total.

Figure 17: Comparison of the agricultural labour split by working time between a five year average (2017:2021) and 2023

Clustered bar chart showing the change in labour between the five year average (2017:2021) and 2023. Within the five year average there were 13,200 full-time agricultural staff. This increased to 15,000 in 2023. Within the five year average there were 7,600 part-time staff which increased a little in 2023 to 8,100. Within the five year average seasonal labour was around 8,300. This was the same for 2023.



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