Local MSP & NFUS Vice President Team Up For Milking Duties

Emma Harper MSP visited NFUS vice president Gary Mitchell at his dairy farm West Galdenoch, near Stoneykirk near Stranraer, Dumfries and Galloway last Friday (31st March).

The south of Scotland MSP – and dairy farmer’s daughter – even helped the farmer with milking duties.

Ms Harper commented:

“it was great to visit Gary’s farm for the first time. He’s more than a dairy farmer so it was useful for me to see what he does first-hand.
“Gary has a particular interest in developing the young workforce. He has visited Stranraer Academy to speak with the pupils about agricultural business and farming and he has created places for apprenticeships to be available on his farm.  He has even created a class room on his farm to assist apprentices with their learning and development.
“Gary’s apprentice Scott also came to hello during the afternoon’s visit to talk about his experience as a young man from an urban background becoming involved in the agricultural sector.
“We also took the opportunity to discuss current farm practice and the opportunities and challenges that are facing rural businesses now that Article 50 has been triggered by Prime Minister.
“While there Gary invited me to milk his cows – or at least put the milking machines on.
“It has been many years since I have been in the milking parlour with my wellies on on. I thoroughly enjoyed getting back in to the milking.
“Both Gary and I were able to work together as he showed me how to activate the vacuum and attach the machines to the coos.
“I am sure this means that we will be able to work together as MSP and NFUS vice president!”


Mr Mitchell added:

“It was great to welcome Ms Harper on farm recently, and for her to take time out to do so. This visit tied in well with our wider engagement with other local politicians.
“It provided the opportunity for Ms Harper to hear about the issues going forward with labour and the work we are doing to get more young people onto farms, which she was fully supportive of.
“It gave me the opportunity to demonstrate and explain the important role agriculture plays in the wider Scottish food and drink industry, but the necessity for farmers to receive fairer returns for what the produce.”

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