SRUC farming consultants have created an emergency document to help farmers plan ahead in case they fall ill during the coronavirus pandemic.

With sheep enterprises in particular facing a challenging lambing season, farmers are being urged to make a plan B as soon as possible.

The Emergency Plan template, created by the Farm Advisory Service (FAS), allows farmers to record the names and numbers of key contacts such as vets, feed representatives, accountants and contractors.

They can also provide information about where stock is housed – including in isolated facilities such as outlying steadings and out-winterings, and when lambing or calving is due to start.

Chloe McCulloch, principal consultant at SAC Consulting, part of Scotland’s Rural College which delivers the FAS programme, urged farmers to complete the document as soon as possible.

“The key to success this year, regardless of the type of farm, is to have a robust plan and to take some time now to think through what you would do and who you would phone in the event you or members of the team become unwell”.

“The template won’t take long to complete and will ensure that if you become ill, your livestock can still be cared for.”

Farmers can download the template from the FAS website and are advised to keep it somewhere that is accessible to all staff, such as the farm office.

Market round-up

Lawrie and Symington sold 354 store cattle at Lanark on Tuesday.

Bullocks topped at £1,345 for a Limousin cross or 259p/kg for an Aberdeen Angus to average 220p/kg. Heifers topped at £1235 for a British Blue or 249p/kg for a Limousin cross to level at 203p. Dairy bullocks averaged 155.8p/kg.

Messrs Craig Wilson sold 10 prime heifers at Ayr on Tuesday to a top of £1,460 for a Limousin and 241p/kg for a Charolais to average £1211 or 212p, while three prime beef bred bullocks peaked at £1,559 for a British Blue and 248p for a Limousin to level at £1411 or 241p. Two prime, dairy bred bullocks sold to 162p to average 153p or £1007.

In the rough ring trade was slightly easier on the week with 10 beef cows selling to £1,120 for a Limousin or 180p for an Aberdeen Angus to average 118p overall, while 28 dairy cows peaked at £770 and 127p for a Friesian to level at 94p. Five bulls sold to £1,540 or 164p for a Limousin to average 138p, while 3 Clean, OTM cattle peaked at £1100 or 168p for an Aberdeen Angus bullock.

The firm also sold 395 prime and cast sheep at Newton Stewart yesterday.

The 372 prime hoggets sold better than expected to average 187p selling to £97 or 221p.