Ring of truth for young farmers' training plans

Specialist training for the next generation of young farmers will cost less in the future thanks to a deal hammered out between the Scottish Association of Young Farmers (SAYFC) and three of Scotland's machinery rings.

SAYFC chairman Stuart Jamieson. Picture: Contributed
SAYFC chairman Stuart Jamieson. Picture: Contributed

The agreement sees Borders, Tayforth and Highland machinery rings offering Scotland’s rural youth discounted training courses in a range of activities. These include forklift driving, chainsaw use, welding, sprayer operation, ATV driving and pest control management. The level of discount will vary depending on which ring is involved and the type of course.

SAYFC chairman Stuart Jamieson said: “Over the last couple of years we have identified a skills shortage and following a demand from our members we felt it was essential to facilitate training opportunities with our partners.

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“This affordable, practical training will be delivered at a venue and time to suit the entrants with the sessions exclusive to their group. This will give them the confidence to ask questions and gain the relevant knowledge required to support their careers.”

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For their part, Michael Bayne, manager at Borders Machinery Ring (BMR), said: “BMR is delighted to be involved in this Young Farmers training initiative. The project aims to not only increase skill levels but also raise awareness of health and safety on farm. We look forward to strengthening our links with young people entering the agricultural industry.”

This view was endorsed by Tayforth’s Lynne Ferguson, who said the training would not only make farms safer and more productive but they would ensure compliance with legislation.

Lynne Macarthur from Highlands Machinery Ring added the partnership would increase the opportunities available to young people which, in turn, would help sustain the future of the agricultural sector.