The red meat supply chain in Scotland contributes around £2.4 billion to the country’s total output, making a £733 million contribution to Scotland’s Gross Domestic Product and providing employment totalling 33,000 jobs, according to a new report, commissioned by Quality Meat Scotland (QMS).
The 39-page document reveals that red meat production accounts for around 40% of total farming output in Scotland, based on cattle, sheep and pig production from around 20,000 holdings. This includes 14,300 LFA specialist cattle and sheep holdings, around 2300 non-LFA cattle and sheep holdings and nearly 300 specialist pig holdings.
“As well as clearly laying out the way in which red meat production underpins Scotland’s agricultural output, the report highlights the role red meat plays in social sustainability and in the maintenance of Scotland’s landscape,” said QMS senior economics analyst, Iain Macdonald, adding that the report also clearly identifies there are opportunities to increase the contribution the industry makes to Scotland’s economy.
“The main routes identified for achieving this include the retention of more animals in Scotland and the wider adoption of best practice at farm level.
“The other key opportunities identified for driving growth in our industry are greater collaboration and information sharing across the supply chain.”