Survey to map Scotland’s tenant farming sector

Surveys are being sent to every tenant farmer in Scotland as part of a major piece of research that the Government says will influence the future of Scottish farming.

Responses to the questionnaire will inform the work of the Ministerial-led Agricultural Holdings Legislation review, which is considering, among other issues, absolute right to buy for traditional secure 1991 agricultural tenancies.

Corresponding surveys will be sent to landlords shortly, and a further telephone survey to better understand landlord and tenant farmer relationships will be carried out with a sample of tenant farmers and landlords in the coming months.

The move comes as the Scottish Government publishes a new map showing the distribution of tenant farms across Scotland.

“This research is vital to the review of Agricultural Holdings Legislation I am leading, as responses will influence our findings and the future of Scottish farming,” said Rural Affairs Secretary Richard Lochhead.

“The map published today shows the distribution of tenant farms across Scotland, but we need to build up a much more detailed picture of the issues facing the sector and those working in it,” he explained. “The surveys being carried out on our behalf have been developed in collaboration with the Tenant Farming Forum and ask important questions about people’s experiences of farming and views on the future of the tenanted agriculture sector.”

A report incorporating all the strands of the research will be published on the Scottish Government website later this year.

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