The Scottish Government recognises that farm diversification is a means for farmers to widen and strengthen the economic base of their businesses and contribute to a more diversified rural economy. The Scottish Rural Development Programme (SRDP)
aims to support a diverse land business sector through ‘Rural Priorities Funding’.
The Scottish Planning System supports farm diversification and the Scottish Government published a Guide to Farm Diversification and Planning
in 2003. Whilst the planning sytem has changed in recent years, this Guide still provides very useful advice.
Scottish Planning Policy
states that the planning system has a significant role in supporting sustainable economic growth in rural areas. By taking a positive approach to new development, planning authorities can help to create the right conditions for rural businesses and communities to flourish. The aim should be to enable development in all rural areas which supports prosperous and sustainable communities whilst protecting and enhancing environmental quality.
Local Authorities have a key role to play in supporting diversification and a strategy for rural development should be contained within the development plan, and should be able to respond to the specific circumstances in an area whilst reflecting the overarching aim of supporting diversification and growth of the rural economy.
Scottish Land & Estates’ Rural Enterprise Demo Day
programme provides farmers and land managers with an opportunity to explore a wide range of diversification opportunities.