Posters help Scotland farmers educate countryside visitors

Farmers and crofters in Scotland are using clear and colourful posters to encourage responsible behaviour from people using the countryside.

The eye-catching signs are designed to inform the public about farming activities taking place in the countryside, linking them to food production and the environment, and encouraging responsible access.

See also: FW Opinion: Crowded footpaths show countryside’s appeal

With lockdown restrictions beginning to ease and more people expected to be using the countryside over the coming months, NFU Scotland (NFUS) hopes that the posters will encourage responsible behaviour.

Poster in field

© NFU Scotland

The union’s Next Generation group, made up of young farmers and crofters, has designed different signs which are for fields producing a range of crops, as well as fields where livestock are grazing.

The posters tell people what is happening in a given field – for example, silage making – or to be wary of ground-nesting birds or livestock, and to keep dogs on a lead.

All the posters ask the public to “please enjoy #responsibleaccess”.

NFUS’s Next Generation chairman, Peter Moss, from Orkney, said: “We all have a role to play in helping inform the public about the farming activities we are undertaking.

“By telling our own farming story, where we manage the environment while producing food, we can help ensure that those accessing these areas do so responsibly and safely. 

“We also want to be positive and thank them for their continued support for Scottish produce – a trend we have seen increase throughout the pandemic.”

Peter Moss in field with cattle

Peter Moss © NFU Scotland

Andrew Neilson, a farmer from East Brackenridge farm in Lanarkshire, said he is using the posters to deter cyclists from riding over his winter wheat crop. “We have used these to explain to passers-by what is happening in our fields.”

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