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East Ayrshire farmer wins Nature of Scotland Food and Farming Award

Food and Farming prizegiving at Nature of Scotland Awards (c) RSPB, S Williams
"Food and farming are becoming even more important as Scotland aims to expand its food and drink sector, and this award recognises the people who are managing our farmland and producing food in ways that support nature"

John Dalziel, of Common Farm in East Ayrshire, has picked up the Nature of Scotland 2018 Food and Farming Award, sponsored by the James Hutton Institute, for his efforts to integrate wildlife conservation into his successful farming system and his work with partners to restore peatlands, create wetlands and conserve curlews.

The award was presented by Professor Colin Campbell, Chief Executive of the James Hutton Institute, at a ceremony held at the Edinburgh Sheraton Grand Hotel with 48 finalists and more than 330 guests in attendance.

Mr Dalziel and his family have farmed in East Ayrshire since the 1950s, and farming in the area presents numerous challenges, including threats to the region's internationally relevant wildlife.

Eric Neilson earned a highly commended mention for transforming Meserhead Farm, formerly arable land, into a wildlife-rich coastal wetland, restoring watercourses and pools, installing sluices, clearing ditches and removing scrub.

Professor Campbell said: "Food and farming are becoming even more important as Scotland aims to expand its food and drink sector, and this award recognises the people who are managing our farmland and producing food in ways that support nature."

The Nature of Scotland Awards recognise and celebrate excellence, innovation and outstanding achievement in nature conservation, and bring together industry professionals, public sector organisations, community groups, politicians, charities and conservationists who share a common interest in preserving Scotland’s precious natural heritage. Winners of the eight categories at the 2018 gala were:

  • Business: Barratt Homes 
  • Community Initiative: Ninewells Community Garden therapeutic gardening for all
  • Food and Farming: Common Farm
  • Innovation: CuanTec
  • Nature Tourism: The Argaty Red Kite Project
  • Political Advocate of the Year: Dr Tom Dargie
  • RSPB Young Nature Champion: Xander Johnston
  • SNH Youth and Education: Reviving Rossie - Awakening a Secret Wood.

For more information about the Nature of Scotland Awards, visit the RSPB Scotland website.

More information from: 

Bernardo Rodriguez-Salcedo, Media Manager, Tel: +44 (0)1224 395089 (direct line), +44 (0)344 928 5428 (switchboard) or +44 (0)7791 193918 (mobile).


Printed from /news/east-ayrshire-farmer-wins-nature-scotland-food-and-farming-award on 12/12/18 05:01:02 PM

The James Hutton Research Institute is the result of the merger in April 2011 of MLURI and SCRI. This merger formed a new powerhouse for research into food, land use, and climate change.