New plan looks at how crofting can be helped along
A plan has been published setting out how crofting can be supported to flourish in the future.
The National Development Plan for Crofting highlights the core elements necessary to ensure that crofting continues to play an integral role in rural and island life, as well as delivering policy priorities for climate change mitigation and biodiversity.
The plan was developed by The Scottish Government, working closely with key stakeholders.
Rural Economy Secretary Fergus Ewing said: “Crofting has a special place in Scotland’s cultural heritage. In many cases rural and remote rural communities would not exist if it was not for crofting. We recognise the vital role farmers and crofters play, especially through the pandemic when they have worked tirelessly to put food on the table for the people of Scotland and I want to offer my thanks to them.
“We now need to realise the potential for croft land to address the climate change and biodiversity challenges and to support thriving rural communities. Land is a key asset, and we need to optimise its use to produce food more sustainably, to cut emissions and enhance our environment.
“We need crofters to adapt to new circumstances and encourage modern approaches to crofting, with diversification into agri-tourism, woodland regeneration and creation, local food networks, in addition to the restoration of our degraded peatlands.
"This plan has been developed with key stakeholders and we will continue to work alongside them, including the Crofting Commission, which is absolutely critical to the wellbeing of crofting.