Scottish pig aid package criticised

NFU Scotland has criticised a £1m government aid package announced for Scotland’s beleaguered pig producers.

The aid, a mix of funding to look at the marketing and labelling of pig meat, ignored recommendations made by the Scottish Pig Sector Task Force, NFUS said.

Jim McLaren, NFUS president, said £200,000 of the £1m had already been allocated in the Autumn 2007 foot-and-mouth package and to labelling schemes.

“We now need to sit down with the Scottish government and industry representatives to discuss how the remaining £700,000 should be spent.”

Mr McLaren said Scottish pig producers needed a clear steer that they were valued and had a future, but the announcement may have left them with “little appetite” to start discussions again.

“The task force’s key recommendations revolved around delivering financial support direct to Scotland’s pig producers.

“There was a real expectation amongst pig farmers that this package would deliver real benefits.

“Unfortunately, this announcement his not what they hoped or wanted to hear.”

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