SAC Consulting beefs up livestock advisory team

23 January 2020 3 min. read
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Agricultural advisory firm SAC Consulting Solutions has appointed two new members to its beef and sheep team, as farmers in the sector look to adapt to rapidly changing conditions. Robert Ramsay moves to the team having already spent nine years with the firm, while Lesley Wylie joins the consultancy having previously worked as a Livestock Procurement Officer.

The number of surviving cattle in Scotland currently sits at a historic low, having declined rapidly since the year 2000. While the 2% drop in numbers to 1.76 million cattle in Scotland does come as a lengthy trend since 1957, the weather seems to have exacerbated it. As climate change continues to create new challenges for agriculture in Scotland, the services of agricultural consulting firms have become increasingly important.

SAC Consulting Solutions has its roots in Scottish agriculture and the rural sector, having been launched in 1905. The firm is connected to Scotland’s Rural College, something which allows it to continue to have deep bonds with research and education colleagues, and to remain independent of any trade products and services. The firm’s work ranges from business advice to soil nutrition to livestock and agronomy, to branding and marketing of food products.

SAC Consulting beefs up livestock advisory team

Anticipating high demand from clients looking to navigate the changing environment the sector faces, SAC has strengthened its beef and sheep team at the start of 2020 with the appointment of two consultants. Robert Ramsay and Lesley Wylie will focus on working with producers and stakeholders across the supply chain, identifying on-farm solutions for more profitable and sustainable livestock production systems.

An experienced beef and sheep farmer, Robert Ramsay joins the beef and sheep team having already assisted with SAC Consulting as an Agricultural Consultant for the last nine years. He has specialised in business management, livestock system, renewables and all aspects of agricultural subsidies. With the challenges facing the industry, Ramsay – who will continue to be based in the Ayr Advisory office – noted that farmers must find where their inefficiencies are, and adapt their systems to optimise profitability.

Speaking to The Scottish Farmer, Ramsay said, “Farmers are under attack from a number of angles; financially, politically and environmentally. In a changing market, ensuring your business is heading in the right direction is essential. From a business perspective, budgeting has seldom been more important than it is now and developing livestock systems which are highly resource efficient is key.”

Also joining the team is Lesley Wylie – a new arrival at SAC. Wylie previously worked as a Livestock Procurement Officer for ABP in Perth. She will be based in the Forfar SAC Consulting office, and will aim to support a beef industry in Scotland that is fit for purpose now and into the future.

Wylie remarked, “I am very passionate about the beef industry which led me to my career change from chartered accountancy to livestock procurement and now to a beef consultant with SAC Consulting. [Looking at the challenges facing the sector, farmers should] build strong relationships and look at efficiencies that could be tailored in your business based on the trends in the market.”