• Livestock farmers were dealt a shocking blow when the government dashed their hopes of 20-day movement restrictions being lifted following the foot and mouth crisis.

In July, 2002, officials said the restrictions would last into the 'foreseeable future'. The official stated: "We will be discussing with stakeholders how we move forward regarding restrictions but it will be difficult to move back to the status quo. NFU Scotland leader at the time, Jim Walker said he was disappointed with the decision.

• The Food Standards Agency launched an investigation following reports that tonnes of meat are being smuggled into the UK from the Far East.

It was feared that hundreds of cans of pork labelled 'Product of the People's Republic if China' and pots of instant noodle containing dried beef and chicken and pork extracts from China and Vietnam would spark another foot-and-mouth outbreak.

It was believed the products came from an unlicensed processing plant which did not meet EU standards.

• The government were slammed for their handing of the foot-and-mouth outbreak in a report entitled 'Lessons to be Learned'.

The inquiry said the handling was a catalogue of disasters and highlighted the sense of panic coupled with erratic communications and a breakdown of any orderly process. The attack centred mainly on officialdom south of the Border and said the outreak was better managed in Scotland.

Dumfries and Galloway Council were praised for how they helped to bring the epidemic under control.

25 years ago

• Milk was hitting the headlines in 1987 with the Milk Marketing Board suggesting the purchase of a shareholding in Scottish Farm Dairy Foods would be their most likely option to gain a presence in the liquid milk market.

The SFDF was initiated to give some stability to the notoriously unstable liquid sales market.

• Only one Scottish breeder exhibited in the cattle section at the Royal Welsh show in 1987, but Jim Goldie, of South Bowerhouses, Dumfries, certainly made his bresence felt, winning the Limousin championship with his cow, Goldies Trust.

In the record-breaking sheep section he was joined by fellow Dumfries-shire farmer, David Hodge, of Slodahill, Lockerbie – both showing Bleu du Maines.

A gimmer from Mr Hodge won the Royal Highland and Mr Goldie won the Royal at Stoneleigh with an imported ewe.

• As in 2012, potato blight was a big concern after weather conditions over the whole North College area were favourable for the spread of the disease.

The college recommended blight programmes started immediately, with spraying intervals appropriate for high risk conditions.

50 years ago

• In the 'Country Woman's Page' in 1962, Elizabeth Locke wrote a comical piece about forgetting items on holiday: "And the things that are omitted at packing time? The more important the item – the better chance it seems of it being left out.

"Don't tell me otherwise. Only the other year, in the Border town where we were to spend our holidays, I found I had left the keys of the trunks at home. The local ironmonger had to be called in to get us out of our difficulties. The year before I left my purse with most of our ready cash in it."

• AS Morton, manager of the demonstration farm at South Cathkin, owned by British Oil and Cake Mills said if the Ayrshire cow was to retain her place in Scotland as a milk producer as well as a stylish cow she must give more milk, starting as a heifer.

Mr Morton told more than 60 farmers who crowded one of the farm's large byres that the average yield of Ayrshires in the byre over the years was only 7685lb in 270 days.

• The weather was causing show disturbances in 1962, with the Vale of Alford Agricultural Association abandoned after the livestock judging.

The closure posed a great financial loss for the association as the gate drawings of £13 6s did not go far to meet their expenses.

100 years ago

• In 1912 popular lifestyle columnist Gretchen gave a tip to make use of old tights: "one's own stocking legs, when the feet are done, can be turned into stockings for young children.

"Thus; cut carefully into two halves lengthwise far enough to measure from the toe to the ankle where, in a knitted stocking one sets for the heel. Then cut one of theseslit halves off, leaving the length of the heel.

"Fold in half and and stitch up to form the heel; then the piece that has been cut offis stitched round to form the sole. All the seams must be machined, overcast and made smooth."

• Gretchen also gave a tip on eating salad at the dinner table: "when a dressing is used, the green stuff, and especially the lettuce leaves, should be shred with the fingers before being placed in the bowl.

"It is most awkward to lift huge straggling pieces on to a small place - sometimes a large plate is used at supper, with a small one for bread, but at the tea table there is room for only a small additional plate, and those half-moon salad plates are impossible with unshredded salad leaves."