Zoe Meldrum and Ruth Taylor have joined NFU Scotland as rural business policy advisor and climate change policy manager respectively.

Climate change has become an increasingly important issue for Scotland’s farmers and crofters, and the union has reflected this with the hiring of Ms Taylor as to cover that brief. She joins NFUS having spent the last two years at the Scottish Parliament where she worked on environment and rural affairs issues. Prior to that, Ruth has worked abroad in China and received a degree in law from Glasgow University and a Master’s in International Law and Sustainable Development from Strathclyde University.

Following her appointment, she said: “I am delighted to be joining the team at an exciting time for Scottish agriculture. I look forward to contributing to NFU Scotland’s work on climate change and working to ensure that Scottish farmers and crofters are recognised for the work already being done to tackle climate change.”

Rural Business is another remit which has been prioritised by the union, and as dedicated advisor on that topic, Ms Meldrum will be directly involved with all policy areas which affect NFUS member’s business, and will aim to support them as much as possible.

Zoe grew up in the Scottish Borders and completed an undergraduate degree in Geology and Physical Geography and a Master’s in Environmental Protection and Management from the University of Edinburgh. She has since held a range of roles within the Scottish food and drink industry, including the Industry Development Team at Scotland Food and Drink.

Looking at her new role with NFUS, Zoe commented: “Business functionality underpins all aspects of farming I am looking forward to supporting members as Rural Business Policy Advisor. It is essential firms are empowered to adapt to ever-changing landscape and I can’t wait to play my role in supporting rural businesses in achieving their ambitions.”

Commenting on both the new appointments, head of policy Gemma Cooper said: “Ruth and Zoe are excellent additions to our well respected policy team and I look forward to working with them both.

“Both bring strong technical knowledge, a background in rural affairs and an understanding of the issues facing our farmers. Their appointment underlines an ongoing commitment from NFUS to actively invest in policy areas that keep our members interests at forefront of policy discussions.”

Both new additions to the policy team will be based at the NFUS head office in Ingliston.