By James Garner and Shelley Wright

A NEW 300,000 online auction system for livestock, machinery and other farm commodities has been launched by the Aberdeenshire-based ANM group.

The Scottish Executive has provided ANM with a maximum 40% grant under its new processing and marketing scheme, worth 60,000 initially.

The same amount is earmarked for subsequent development of the site if the first year proves successful.

Brian Pack, ANM chief executive, says the new system will allow farmers to trade farm-to-farm, but with the benefit of the auction mechanism to ensure a fair price.

The site is at auction.goanm.co.uk/.

“Its best described as a dynamic on-line tendering system – although bids are visible to all – rather than an auction in the conventional sense,” she adds.

Sales are expected to last a few days, while larger items, such as whole herds of cattle, can be marketed over several weeks to allow buyers an opportunity to visit the farm and view the stock.