Open Day looks into farming for a better climate

Robert and Jac Neill of Upper Nisbet Farm near Jedburgh are opening their gates to visitors on October 20 for their first meeting as part of the Farming for a Better Climate (FFBC) initiative.

Funded by the Scottish Government and managed by SAC, FFBC has been established to seek and promote practical ways of reducing greenhouse gas emissions from agriculture. These measures can not only help farming lessen its carbon footprint but also result in real financial gains for farm businesses. The Neills have recently joined the project as its arable focus farm. Over the coming months they will connect with the rural community through on-farm meetings to identify and pilot ideas and techniques that are practical, affordable and credible.

The first meeting on October 20 is open to all and will include talks from SAC experts covering energy use, renewables, fertiliser and manures, crop rotations and agronomy, supply chain requirements and financial efficiency. Subsequent discussion group meetings will take place over the coming months.

SAC facilitator for Upper Nisbet, Moira Gallagher said: “Robert and Jac are already taking steps to improve business efficiency and mitigate greenhouse gas emissions from routine practices. They are also considering how renewable energy sources can benefit their business. We are looking forward to supporting the Neills as they connect with the local community to generate further ideas.”

Jac Neill said: “The pressure from climate change is all around - you don’t have to look far to see that current farming systems could be at risk. Hopefully this project will help us to see where we can be more efficient, reduce costs and be prepared for future challenges – and we look forward to sharing ideas with the local farming community so everyone can benefit.”

Anyone who like to attend the free open day should register by calling 01835 823322 or emailing frbsstboswells@sac.co.uk. Refreshments and a buffet lunch will be provided on the day.