Scottish Red Meat Industry Profits And Levies


Fantastic news was reported recently straight from the mouths of the Scottish Red Meat Industry. Profits are up. There was an incredible 10% increase in trade in red meat year on year in 2011 with a record £2.1 billion brought in across the board. A fantastic addition to the coffers of the Scottish economy.

This was mainly due to worldwide supplies decreasing seeing prices rise across the UK economy, inflating profits in real terms. However the sad news is that while profits and income were higher, actual stock levels fell as farmers took the decision to rid themselves of lower performance cattle.

Head of Economics Services at QM Stuart Ashworth said"Tight supplies globally led to strong livestock prices during 2011 and this generated increased confidence in the cattle and sheep sectors. However this confidence failed to materialise into greater stock numbers as producers took high prices as an incentive to cull their least productive breeding animals,"

"However, on the upside, the export trade was buoyant and presented some new opportunities to achieve improved carcase balance, while input costs began to ease towards the end of the year," he added. In contrast and two years later, Scotland's red meat industry is looking to capitalise further on the growth of the industry which is so famed for its Aberdeen Angus and other varieties.

"Many lambs and pigs now go from here to English and Welsh abattoirs, which means less funding for Quality Meat Scotland," wrote Mr Salmond. "This practice drains around £1.4m a year from Scotland's farmers when they need that money to support promotion, research and development in our Scotch Beef, Scotch Lamb and Specially Selected Pork brands through Quality Meat Scotland."

"With extra levy revenue at its disposal, Quality Meat Scotland would be able to do even more to maximise the full economic value of the Scotch Brand." It seems apparent that Scotland simply needs an abattoir or two and for DEFRA to sanction a commitment to that aim. Then Scotland can be a fully sell sustaining food chain and save money on abattoir costs.

Either way cattle have to make the journey to their final destination but not necessarily at the cost of farmers. Although this is probably more to do with taxation recovery than any additional effort its country's farmers need to make to send their cattle to an abattoir. Death and taxes are real in the red meat industry just as in human life.