Big boost for Scots dairy farmers

The newly announced £21 million Digital Dairy Value-Chain project could generate an additional £60m – and 600 jobs - in South-West Scotland and Cumbria, where nearly two billion litres of milk are produced each year.

The project, which is led by the SRUC along with a number of commercial and local authority partners, aims to significantly decarbonise the region’s dairy industry, while, at the same time, developing a skilled and innovative workforce in the area to create new products and new ways of working.While the local area will be the main beneficiary, the investment will also be globally relevant, developing best practices and changing the perception of dairy as a high-value product a platform, while also providing research and business innovation into advanced, sustainable, high-value production and processing.

Finance for the project will come through the UK Research and Innovation Strength in Places, and will be centre around SRUC’s Barony campus near Dumfries, as well as at sites in Cumbria and across South-West Scotland.

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Welcoming the news, NFU Scotland’s dairy policy expert Stuart Martin, said it would benefit not only the region but also a dairy sector in Scotland which had experienced a lack of investment in forward looking activity in recent years.

“So it is great to hear that ambitious projects like this will work with the primary producer and dairy supply chain in Scotland to the benefit for all.

“We hope this is a kickstart to further inward investment across the dairy sector in other regions of Scotland.”

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