The agri sector is being urged to sign up for an online election hustings that will see representatives from the main political parties set out their vision for farmers and crofter in Scotland.

Three parties, Conservative, SNP and Liberal Democrats, have already confirmed their participation, with Labour still to confirm their place at the event which takes place on Monday 24 June from 7pm.

The event was announced at the Royal Highland Show by NFUS President Martin Kennedy.

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He said: “We are only two weeks away from a General Election. It is a crucial time for farmers and crofters, and we are keen to work with all parties to deliver a sustainable and profitable future for agriculture.

“This online hustings will provide a unique opportunity for farmers and crofters from across Scotland to hear each party’s position in relation to agriculture and rural communities before the election in July.

“Our initial analysis of party manifestos shows us that several of our key asks have been included. A commitment to an extra £1 billion for UK agriculture is underlined by both the Liberal Democrats and Conservatives and the SNP highlights the need for more funding for farming.

“However, there is no mention of an agriculture budget in the Labour manifesto at all and we are disappointed at this.

“Other areas of interest across the manifestos include engagement in trade deals, increased local procurement and the importance of food security.

“This week, we will meet politicians from all parties across all four days of the Royal Highland Show and I look forward to hearing from their representatives on Monday evening on how their parties will help deliver a profitable and sustainable future for Scotland’s farmers and crofters.”

Those interested in hearing and questioning the major parties on how they will support farming, food and rural communities, including media, are invited to register at:

NFUS recently published its own election manifesto of five key asks of: ring-fenced and multi-annual funding to agriculture and to increase the UK Government’s funding commitment to the sector by at least an additional £1 billion; Improve producer margins to increase food security; commit to developing and delivering migration policy that works for the rural economy; protect domestic food production by classing agriculture as a sensitive sector in future trade deals and increase investment, tax and fiscal incentives that support agriculture and food production.