IN his address to NFU Scotland's AGM in Glasgow yesterday, President Andrew McCornick highlighted the need for a fairer supply chain and more profitability in the industry.

Mr McCornick told his audience that the uncertainty of Brexit means Scottish farmers will need to move away from a reliance on CAP (Common Agricultural Policy) support, but any new system must drive profitability into the sector if it is to thrive in the coming years. He said that while Brexit creates many challenges for the industry, it can also act as an opportunity for improving those areas which are currently failing farmers.

Mr McCornick stressed that: "Current policy and support will change, but there will be a need for ongoing support for farming and crofting. The structure of that support will change, as will the emphasis on how it is delivered, and that is where we need to push for the Government to create an infrastructure that works for Scottish agriculture.

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"Brexit is the biggest change to our industry in more than 40 years and we must ensure that the decision makers are informed and educated on our importance to the Scottish and UK economy and jobs."

The Union boss went on to say: "Consumers are getting cheap, healthy, nutritious food but the margin is elsewhere in the food chain.

"I believe the supply chain is broken. Farmers and crofters need a fairer share of the consumer spend from the thriving Scottish food and drink sector."

Market round-up

United Auctions sold 453 store heifers at Stirling on Wednesday to average 217.3p per kg (+1.5p on the week) and 844 store, beef-bred bullocks to level at 239.4p (+15.5p). Forty-three store, B&W bullocks averaged 150p (-5.3p) and 15 store bulls levelled at 199.9p (-11.8p).

C&D Auction Marts Ltd sold eight prime heifers in Dumfries on Wednesday to a top of 228p and an average of 192p, while three prime bullocks peaked at 162p and levelled at 154.3p.

In the rough ring 39 beef cows averaged 112p and 55 dairy cows levelled at 103p.

The firm also sold 600 prime hoggs to a top of £102 per head and 219p per kg to average 195p (+3p).

A nice show of 342 cast sheep saw heavy ewes average £78 and light/export-type ewes level at £48.

Messrs Craig Wilson Ltd sold 1174 prime hoggs in Newton Stewart on Wednesday to a top of £115.50 and 219.5p to average 196p (+7p).

There were also 109 heavy cast ewes that averaged £77.74 and 230 light ewes that levelled at £55.14.