The national Skills for Farming Group, which consists of stakeholders from across the agricultural industry, held its inaugural ‘Be a Farmer Day’ at SRUC Barony in June. Improving industry attractiveness was one of the key priorities identified by the group and the event’s objectives included improving young people’s perceptions of the industry and showcasing the range or careers available.
Quality Meat Scotland (QMS) collaborated with The Institute of Auctioneers and Appraisers Scotland (IAAS) to deliver a ‘Be an Auctioneer’ session. Murray Steel from United Auctions, Stirling spoke to pupils about the skills required to be an auctioneer and about his career pathway. Murray highlighted the variety within the job and the chance to travel across Scotland and meet new people.
QMS’s Health & Education Manager Alix Ritchie spoke with pupils about the journey red meat makes, from farm to fork, and the wide range of careers available throughout the journey.
The highlight of the session was the auction which saw imaginary sheep being sold for over £1 Million!
Throughout the day pupils also learned about sheep shearing, technology in agriculture, tractors, dairy farming, animal husbandry, research, engineering and countryside management. Perception analysis was also being carried out prior, during and after the event to find out how young people perceive the industry and how the ‘Be a Farmer Day’ influenced this perception.
Neil Wilson, Executive Director of the Institute of Auctioneers and Appraisers Scotland “We were delighted Murray was able to share his passion and enthusiasm for his job as an auctioneer. We need a continued pipeline of skilled young people to work in our auction marts and events like this help encourage the next generation.”
Alix Ritchie, Health & Education Manager at Quality Meat Scotland “Having been involved in the planning of this event from conception it was great to see the pupils at SRUC Barony learning about the variety of careers available. Many of those attending had never considered agriculture as a possible pathway but they really engaged with the sessions with some looking for more information. Huge thanks must go to SRUC Barony for hosting the event and to all those, including Murray, for making it possible.”