14 September 2001
Scots census reveals virus toll

By FWi staff

PROVISIONAL results from the June 2001 census show a decline in both arable and livestock production in Scotland.

The drop of 6% in cattle numbers to 1.9m head, and the 12% fall that cut Scotlands sheep flock to 8.1m animals, is primarily attributed to the foot-and-mouth disease outbreak.

Numbers in the intensive livestock sector, however, rose, with pig numbers rising 4% to 582,000 and the total poultry flock increasing by 13% to 16.1m.

The area of combinable crops fell 3% in the year to 477,000ha. And the census shows an increase of 14% in set-aside, and a rise of 3% in the area of fallow land.

The main changes in cropping included a cut of 45% in the area of linseed grown, and a 7% reduction in oilseed rape.

The Scottish Executive attributes this to the cut in subsidies for these crops as a result of Agenda 2000 reforms.

A 2% drop in the total number of regular staff was recorded, while the figure for casual and seasonal workers fell 6.4% in the year.

Final results from the census will be published next month.

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Foot-and-mouth – confirmed outbreaks
Foot-and-mouth – FWi coverage