One family which has enthusiastically embraced diversification is the Scott-Parks, of the Portnellan Organic Farm, on the scenic south-eastern shore of Loch Lomond.

In 1952, Stanley Scott-Park bought the 230 acre unit for his son, Jock, to manage as a beef and dairy farm. It’s been in family since with Stanley’s grandson, David and now his great grandson, Chris all working there.

In 2005, they started offering mooring for rent on the loch and got a taste for diversification. They now boast four star self-catering accommodation, glamping, speedboat tours, kayaking and lots more, as well as remaining a family farm with an organic beef herd.

Chris, the fourth generation of the farming family, described how such a pretty dramatic change came about: I suppose it really came about because of necessity. We were looking to bring in an extra income so that we could support what was at the time three generations of the family plus a dairyman.

“So the first thing they did back in 2005, we started offering moorings for rent on Loch Lomond and then in 2010 the price we were being paid for the milk meant it wasn’t really worth producing milk anymore, so we no longer had a dairyman.

“We took the decision that we were going to convert the dairyman’s cottage into four star self-catering. The next thing we did was find out about glamping and we decided that we were going to give that a go. We put up a glamping tent and started offering that for rent as well.

“At about the same time, I also started up a side business running speedboat tours on Loch Lomond and also offering kayak and paddleboard hire as well.”

Increasing the size of the farm was not an option as there’s Forestry Commission land on one side and the constraint of Loch Lomond on the other.

Chris added: “It was getting to the stage where we really needed to diversify into something else to bring in an additional income. And going back a few years we actually got planning permission for a fairly sizeable development on the farm, self-catering accommodation, but at the time the costs were just too high and it was also going to be too much of an impact. It was going too big, too soon, really.”

The internet has really helped the business promote itself and as well as via its own website, they also use social media like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, as well as platforms like Visit Scotland and Love Loch Lomond.

Find out more of this from a podcast put together by NFU Mutual from the operation at Portnellan at