Milk producers can use their land to build much needed equity in their businesses, says one Scottish property agent.

Speaking at the Semex Dairy Conference in Glasgow (15 January), Charles Dudgeon of property consultants Savills said progressive GB and Irish farmers willing to take calculated risks should look to use available land to diversify.

“Demand for farmland is strong and moreover it is being driven largely by practicing farmers from across the UK, Ireland and beyond. 

“Ultimately, while some producers are clearly leaving the industry, others are taking their place,” he said. 

‘Strong confidence’

“Together with the level of investment being made, this points to an industry that has strong confidence in itself.”

“Land in Scotland is in particular demand and not only from producers in the UK but also further afield,” he said. 

“This is driving land value in the region and it is currently at its highest since 1997.  But even at £3000-£4000/acre, it’s still much better value than may regions.

“Take £9000/acre in Denmark and £16,000/acre in Ireland and it’s easy to see why farmers from other regions are finding Scottish land an attractive proposition.”

Many factors affect land values, but farmers need to be tuned in to these and the wider property market if they are to harness the potential of their property for the good of their overall business,” said Mr Dudgeon.