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Agribusiness News May 2024

Posted: Wednesday, 01 May 2024

Welcome to the May edition of Agribusiness News.  If you prefer to download this document click the download button.

N e w s  i n  b r i e f

Meteorological and political turmoil

With the country experiencing one of the wettest springs on record, it is hardly surprising that no sector has not been affected. From poor cereal establishment (see Cereals, pg. 3), minimal spring flush (see Milk, pg. 7) and late finishing (see Beef, pg. 4), to managing forage ahead of next winter (see Inputs, pg. 10) and considering alternative bedding (see Management Matters, pg. 9), the impacts are widespread. This edition of Agribusiness News holds a theme of how sectors have been affected, and ways that these impacts can be mitigated over the coming months. In more positive news, sector updates from sheep and pigs show a strong market and early signs of a seasonal uplift, respectively.

In politics, the termination of the Bute House agreement on the 26th April, which established the SNP and Green Party government coalition, followed by Humza Yousaf’s resignation as First Minister on the 29th April, throws political stability in the coming months into question. This follows the announcement on the 18th April of Scottish Government’s intention to scrap the climate change target of 75% reduction in emissions by 2030, which is now deemed unfeasible, to be replaced instead with a system of 5-year carbon budgeting (see Policy Brief, pg. 2, for more detail). Alongside ongoing tensions between SNP and Greens about gender recognition laws, the decision was made to politically disassociate, leaving SNP to govern as a minority government. With a new First Minister on the horizon, and the potential of elections down the line, it is hoped that political uncertainty will not hamper progression of agricultural and rural legislation.

Lastly, the second phase of post-Brexit border checks have been implemented as of midnight on the 29th April, which will require imports to the UK to be held and inspected at customs (exempting Ireland), additional to new health certificates introduced on the 31st January. While checks are not expected to delay imports, it is anticipated that additional costs will contribute to increased food inflation of 0.2% over the next three years.

Next month:

  • Deferred grazing
  • Land registration

 This month’s editor: Anna Sellars

Lambs running in a field