Skip to content

Mentoring for new farmers and crofters

If you are considering becoming a farmer or crofter or have set up business in the last five years, then you are entitled to free support through the Farm Advisory Service’s mentoring programme.

Why apply?

Setting up any business is challenging; farming and crofting is no different. Because the success of new entrants to the farming industry is critical to the industry’s overall long-term sustainability, the Scottish Government funds the Farm Advisory Service’s mentoring programme.

As a new entrant, the programme connects you to an experienced mentor with valuable skills and knowledge, matched to your business’s needs, who can guide you through the vital set-up and early growth-years of your business.

Typical skills that mentors offer include:

  • Detailed knowledge and experience of agriculture and running farm businesses
  • A mastery of traditional skills e.g. stone walling, hedge laying etc.
  • Animal welfare and livestock care knowledge
  • Land based educational and skills background
  • Food and drink industry experience
  • Finance and business planning know-how
  • Surveying and planning skills
  • Knowledge of conservation and biodiversity
  • Forestry or woodland skills

Benefit from the knowledge and experience of seasoned farmers and crofters

Many people find someone in their local community to mentor them, while some ask FAS for advice. FAS can find a match with an expert in the right type of farming for you, or experience with the issues you are tackling. Please mention in section 11 of the application form whether you would like help finding a mentor.

Who can apply?

Mentoring support is available to those who have set up or become head of a farming business within the last five years. You will need to be registered in Scotland with the Integrated Administration and Control System (IACS) and hold a Business Reference Number (BRN).

How much funding is there?

Your mentor will be compensated for up to four days of their time.

How to apply

Apply online or download an application form today. Please note that any grant application submitted via post will experience a delay in processing.  As such, anyone seeking grant funding should do so using our online application forms.

Download your Mentoring application form today.

Should you need further information, or require a hard copy of this form, please telephone the Farm Advisory Service advice line on 0300 323 0161.

Download the Mentoring rules and procedures

If you have any queries regarding Mentoring, please contact advice line on 0300 323 0161 or and we will be pleased to talk through the options.



Sign up to the FAS newsletter

Receive updates on news, events and publications from Scotland’s Farm Advisory Service