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If it ain't broke...why fix it? Mapping trouble

ABERFELDY farmer Calum McDiarmid received a late Christmas present from Edinburgh's agricultural civil servants – 13 more fields on his Mains of Murthly farm.

Unfortunately, he maintains that not all the land allocated in the re-mapping was actually his, while some bits that did belong were somehow excluded from this new official definition of his fields.

All over the property, fields had been subdivided in an apparent effort to further isolate already well-recorded ineligible areas, while elsewhere, somewhat comically, a temporary electric grazing fence in place on the day of inspection has been promoted to a permanent field boundary.

But Mr McDiarmid isn't laughing, as this error-strewn map, received from the department on January 16, is now being held to be binding for his next IACS submission and, despite it being no fault of his own, he is being offered no way out of the situation that will not, inevitably, cost him both time and money.

(For the full story and industry reaction see The Scottish Farmer this week, February 2, 2013)

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