It will be hosted by South Scotland MSP Emma Harper with contributions from industry experts.
Various key stakeholders including from the National Farmers Union Scotland (NFUS), Quality Meat Scotland (QMS), The National Sheep Association (NSA), and other policy experts, journalists and those working in agriculture have been invited to attend, as well as councillors, MPs and MSPs.
Key speakers at the event will be Joe Stanley, an East Midlands beef and arable farmer, conservationist, columnist and advocate for sustainability for food, farming the environment; and Newton Stewart dairy farmer Colin Ferguson, who is also Dumfries and Galloway regional chair of the Scottish National Farmers’ Union. Colin has a particular interest in the environment, air quality and sustainable farming. He is also chair of the NFUS Next Generation Committee.
Both speakers will deliver a presentation which will be followed by a question and answer session as to why standards of food production and processing, animal health, welfare, and environment matter.
Ms Harper said: “I look forward to hearing from Joe and Colin about why food and animal welfare standards matter, especially since other countries – including the USA – produce food with poorer animal welfare standards which include higher use of antibiotics and hormone treatments and wider use of already banned pesticides.
“I am extremely interested to hear the thoughts, concerns and potential opportunities from the speakers and I want to raise wider awareness on how important standards are.”
Colin Ferguson added: “As we emerge from the pandemic, and prepare for Brexit, we must ensure that the positive lessons on food security and standards are preserved. As food producers, we take great pride in what we produce. We meet some of the highest production and welfare standards in the world and provide assurances through independent audits that guarantee the delivery of quality Scottish food and drink. Not only ensuring the food is as safe as it can be, but ensuring the methods used to produce our food is as environmentally and climate friendly too.”
Anyone wishing to attend the discussion should email the MSP by the end of the day on Friday.