NFU Scotland Updates ‘how Do You Plan’ Page To Help Farmers And Crofters Deal With Financial Pressures

Scotland’s farmers and crofters are currently facing extreme financial uncertainty as a result of unprecedented pressure from input price inflation.

NFU Scotland have heard the concerns of members who have identified cash flow problems and difficulties with business planning.

Considering the current trading conditions, NFUS has issued guidance to members on how to plan for a business that is facing additional financial pressures. This guidance will be added to the help section of the Union’s ‘How do you plan’ webpage next week and followed by an informative social media campaign.

The key points members need to consider are as follows:

  1. Budget ahead – have a look at where your bank balance was at the end of May/June and compare that to the past two or three years.
  2. Talk to your bank early – if you need additional support from your bank, work with them at an early stage, expect to show why additional finance is required, and how/when it will be repaid.
  3. Keep accounts up to date – if you are seeking to extend your overdraft or require new borrowings, up to date accounts covering your last trading year will be critical.
  4. Green your finances – carbon audits are likely to feature in lender requirements in the future. Having one may help secure a better rate of interest and speed up the availability of the finance to your business.
  5. Work with suppliers – they are also affected by agflation and may not be able to be as flexible as they have been in the past, altering their payment terms. Work with them at an early stage if you face difficulties in making payments.
  6. Seek professional support – take advantage of grant funding through the Farm Advisory Service to undertake an Integrated Land Management Plan to review options available to you.
  7. Share the load – if you are worried about finances, make sure you are open with those around you. Business partners and family members want to know what is going on, don’t struggle alone.
NFU Scotland Vice President Andrew Connon said: “The farming and crofting industry is facing unprecedented input price pressure around the likes of fuel, fertiliser, feed grain, energy, and wages.
“Input cost inflation is already having a significant impact on business decisions at a farm and croft level. This has implications not only for primary producers but also many upstream and downstream businesses that rely on agriculture for their customers and their suppliers.
“While there is no quick fix to the current crisis our ‘How Do You Plan’ guidance will help members navigate the current trading conditions.
“There can be no doubt that concerns will be mounting and that can impact on mental health and wellbeing.  If you, or someone you know, is struggling at this difficult time please reach out for help.
“Farming and crofting can be isolated industries, but sharing the load is an important first step to easing that pressure. RSABI provides emotional, financial, and practical support to people in Scottish agriculture, and has launched a new free helpline number – 0808 1234 555 – available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
“NFU Scotland’s #NFUSHereForYou webpage is another resource available. The links on there can help signpost you to the organisations that are there to help.”

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