SCOTLAND'S RED meat body has welcomed the recommendations of the Suckler Beef Climate Group report as 'clear, practical and implementable guidelines' which will drive Scotland towards net-zero agriculture.

The SBCG have focussed on changes to suckler cow herd management in order to produce lower carbon meat, recommending appropriate funding support to encourage new management practices as well as changes to existing ones.

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Chief executive of Quality Meat Scotland, Alan Clarke, believes the report provides strength to the Scotch beef brand and praised the team behind it: “Beef production’s climate impact has been pilloried, which makes this an important potential roadmap to help suckler beef farmers reduce their GHG emissions,” he said.

“The report has been drafted by a group of people who have first-hand knowledge of beef production, with many having business experience of producing Scotch Beef to very high standards, which is reflected in the practicality of the report’s recommendations."

In recognition of the efforts and achievements of participating businesses in the new scheme, work is ongoing to create a quality standard trademark to promote the end product as climate-friendly food.

Mr Clarke continued: “QMS welcomes the extension of the thinking into how emissions abatement could be modelled within a quality standard trademark, which could be a valuable addition to quality marks like the QMS assurance scheme.”

QMS chair, Kate Rowell, concurred: “The extension of QMS assurance into a mark that is synonymous with climate-friendly beef products will further build on our already strong red meat reputation."

She went on to praise the report as a forward-thinking and practical approach to addressing net-zero challenges and urged the whole red meat supply chain to get behind the proposals.

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welcomed the focus on Scotland's beef suckler herd she said: “Often the climate mitigation attention is focused on beef finisher units, however suckler units are a crucial part of the jigsaw. Suckler cows are at the heart of creating our high value, internationally recognised Scotch Beef products, turning, on many farms, the rough grazing of our iconic Scottish landscape into red meat.

Ms Rowell added that the proposed scheme gives 'clear, practical and implementable guidelines that will contribute greatly to the green story of Scotch Beef and will help Scotland meet its net zero commitment.'

“The detail within the report’s recommendations which encompasses herd and soil health, grassland and nutrient management as well as the application of new technologies and strategic capital investment,” Ms Rowell concluded.