Regional Priority Code
Diversification of Rural Enterprise Priorities
A diverse land-based business sector, through:
a. Encouraging innovation and new product development and local processing, marketing and retailing in line with Scottish Food and Drink Strategy and the Scottish Forestry Strategy. Particularly proposals that:
- contribute towards the establishment of Argyll based product promotion schemes through demonstrable use of local processing and consumer outlets
- develop new distinctive products derived from the Argyll area, e.g. mature lamb initiative, Tiree seaweed potatoes
- contribute to the establishment of farmers market group activities in Argyll
- develop the potential for non-timber forest products, e.g. mushrooms
- add value to timber grown in Argyll through support to local groups such as the Argyll Green Woodworkers.
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b. Strengthening links between primary producers and other industry sectors, including processors, retailers and the food service sector, to develop predictable and stable supplies and reduce costs, waste and food/timber miles and live animal transport. Particularly proposals that:
- encourage greater co-operation between businesses that increases the efficiency of the local food supply chain and provides better returns to the primary producer, e.g. by sharing costs in marketing, distribution and administration particularly food from:
4. sustainable wild harvest sources
- shorten the links between producer and consumer, e.g. between processors (especially store producers, finishers and slaughter houses) distributors, caterers, local consumer outlets and the hospitality industry
- assist with the establishment of improved and sustainable farmers market sites across Argyll
- facilitate the use of local produce from Argyll at all sizes of events (e.g. meetings, conferences, food festivals, music and other cultural events)
- support the development of biomass/biomass utilising wood grown in Argyll including local woodfuel clusters and other measures as outlined in the Scottish Biomass Action Plan
- involve the conversion to or maintenance of organic production methods according to the industry best practice standards.
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c. Improvements in environmental performance particularly in resource usage and waste management practices.
Particularly proposals that:
- involve the use of bio-digesters as an innovative approach to dealing with food and animal waste and as a source of sustainable energy
- involve participation in region or sub-region wide waste recycling schemes, e.g. farm plastics recycling initiatives.
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Higher value rural goods and services being delivered from the primary (agriculture and forestry) manufacturing and processing, and the recreation and tourism sectors, through improvements in quality and reductions in production, processing and transport costs. Particularly proposals that:
- improve access to, and interpretation of, visitor facilities or attractions prioritised within a local area visitor management, access or community development plans
- help improve distinctive and high quality local products that are used to promote the area as a visitor destination
- Proposals that improve the efficiency and reduce costs of transporters, processors, marketing and suppliers within Argyll.
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The increased local use of renewable energy, e.g. woodfuel. Particularly proposals that:
- maximise use of, and can demonstrate direct link to, small scale locally generated renewable energy via wind, hydro or solar sources
- contribute towards improved woodfuel production and which commit to supporting sustainable wood fuel supply chain arrangements across Argyll.
Improved number of career development opportunities, through skills and training initiatives addressing rural skills gaps (complementing work of local enterprise agencies) and incorporating awareness of environmental and social objectives.
Particularly proposals that:
- assist individuals gain or maintain sustainable employment through developing skills particularly those that contribute to sustainability and productivity of their business or employer's business
- seek to introduce new trainees into the land use sector and which also seek to improve the ability for multi-disciplinary land uses, e.g. farmers incorporating woodland/forest management into their livestock enterprise
- seek to collaboratively employ, train and share labour pools using under-employed sectors or young Argyll residents, particularly in traditional land management skills where labour supply and demand is miss-matched
- integrate environmental and social objectives into land management activities including environmental monitoring training, recreational facility management, e.g. path maintenance and social enterprise development.
Improvement in the value and duration of tourism visits in rural areas, including maximising opportunities for green tourism. Particularly proposals that:
- improve access to, and interpretation of, visitor facilities or attractions prioritised within a local area visitor management, access or community development plan.
- Involve the conversion of a farm/croft building where it can be demonstrated that there is a demand for:
- Long term accommodation for those in local employment
- visitor accommodation
- light industry
- retail or catering outlet
- facility connected with on-site recreation business
- training facility
And that also
- conforms to Argyll and Bute Council's sustainable siting and design principles and guidance
- retains or incorporates important vernacular or distinctive local design features
- maximises use of latest energy efficiency technology
- maximises use of local or re-cycled materials
- improves the servicing infrastructure connected with the new venture, e.g. water supply, access, energy supply/efficiency
- compliments another on-farm/croft tourism diversification project such as
a. home grown food or other product
b. on-farm important local wildlife or landscape visitor attraction
c. on-farm recreational facility, e.g. path network, hill walking departure point, pony trekking, fishing ot other field sport, adventure sport area
- seek to develop distinctive tourism brands utilising the distinctive natural, cultural, built, food, drink, tree, woodland and forest heritage of Argyll, e.g. Dalriada Project, heritage trees, Mull wild isles, food and drink trails.
- Improvements in integration between access and land management:
priority will be given to proposals the enhance access/land management integration in NSAs, the settlement coalescence study, and opportunities arising from the Greenspace/Open Space Strategy.
- Improvements in facilities for specific user groups including all abilities. Particularly proposals that:
include facilities for walkers, mountain-bikers, canoeists, horse-riders, divers, wildlife clubs, and community interest groups.