Scottish agriculture is on the “threshold of an era of change”, irrespective of how today’s independence vote goes, according to the National Farmers Union of Scotland (NFUS).
While remaining resolutely impartial throughout the campaign, in respect for the differing views of its members, NFUS said that, regardless of the result, it is appropriate to contemplate the days that will follow the September 18 vote.
“Both campaign teams, and all our politicians, have been fighting to create a better Scotland,” said NFUS president Nigel Miller, urging his members to get ready to “forget the divisions” of recent weeks and to “work together to grasp a better, more successful society”.
“NFUS has been at the centre of the political debate in every corner of rural Scotland but has rightly stood aside to allow our members and the Scottish people to decide Scotland’s future.”
With more than 1700 people having attended union-organised referendum debates, where both campaigns laid out their views on EU membership, currency, access to markets and timelines for constitutional change, Mr Miller said the union had an important part to play in now taking the industry forward.
“The neutral position that we have adopted throughout is now a vital tool as Scotland and the UK move into a new political world,” he said. “NFUS must bridge the political landscape in Scotland and help to develop and energise a better future. The union must also reach out to partners in the UK and Europe and renew those relationships which work for farming and Scotland whatever the result.
“Yes or no, however, we are on the threshold of an era of change.”