Looking for a well-paid summer job like no other? You could become a key part of Scotland’s world-leading seed potato industry by taking up tattie roguing.

Potato roguers are a vital part of the sector as they help maintain high health standards. Roguers patrol crops, identifying and removing diseased or defect plants and thus ensuring that Scotland’s hard-won reputation for quality seed potatoes is maintained.

In the current climate the threat from diseases such as potato virus Y and leaf roll is increasing, and producers are looking to hire skilled and hardworking roguers.

The Scottish Farmer: The course has been running for 58 yearsThe course has been running for 58 years

You can earn a tidy sum over the summer if you pick up the right skills and work hard. Skilled workers can earn upwards of £15/hour, with a potential income of up to £4500 for the season.

The first step is to get qualified. SRUC runs the UK’s only potato roguing course.

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The course has been run by SRUC for 58 years, with records going back to 1966 although it is thought that it was running before this time.

The course is practical and hands-on with plots of the 20 most widely grown potato varieties, diseased plants, and off-types for candidates to get to grips with.

The Scottish Farmer: SRUC run the UK's only potato roguing courseSRUC run the UK's only potato roguing course

The course’s instructors have a wealth of knowledge and experience and will guide candidates through the important features of the Seed Potato Classification Scheme (SPCS) during the week-long course that culminates in a practical exam, putting your new skills at roguing to the test.

Successful candidates receive a certificate recognised throughout the industry.

Armed with this qualification you can reassure potential employers that you have the skills, senses, and stamina to defend their crops against threats such as blackleg and virus.

For young people who are trying to get their foot in the door of the agricultural sector, it is the perfect opportunity. Potato roguing involves working long hours day to day, but the roguing season is short so this is an ideal job for a student during their summer break.

SRUC’s Potato Roguing Course will run from 17 to the 21 June at Mains of Tertowie Farm, Kinellar, Aberdeen AB21 0TS. Plus there is a refresher course on June 24.