FIFE MSP Alex Rowley has commemorated the 20th anniversary of World Milk Day - an annual, worldwide celebration of milk and dairy which takes place on the 1st of June - in a visit to Kirkton of Beath farm, Cowdenbeath.

Established by the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations in 2001 to recognise the importance of milk as a global food, every year since has seen the many benefits of milk and dairy products actively promoted around the world, including how dairy supports the livelihoods of one billion people.

The dairy farm at Kirton on Beath is farmed by David Thomson and is one of many farms that support the Fife economy. There are around 97,000 hectares of farmland in Fife alone with approximately 500 farms of 50 hectares or more.

Commenting, the Labour MSP said:

“Dairy farmers across Scotland work hard to provide us with world class milk and dairy products.

“World Milk Day helps recognise and celebrate this work and this year is focussing on sustainability with messages around the environment, nutrition and socioeconomics.

“The prospect of new tariff-free trade deals with countries around the world and lower standards of imported food pose a real threat to the future of Scottish farming and is why we need to see a commitment from the Scottish and UK Governments to support sustainable farming and protect food production in Scotland.

“It is important to remember the people and livelihoods behind the food we consume. Farmers have a caring responsibly for their communities, the land and their animals. So, recognising their hard work and offering our support to the challenges they face is vital to secure the industry continues for the future.”