In this issue we look at developing a clear strategy in a period of continuing (Brexit) uncertainty and highlight some ground-breaking natural capital work we’ve been involved with in Scotland. We also consider the value of long-term working relationships, flag up a recent project focused on the UK shellfish sector and provide a brief update on company news.
We hope you find it of interest.
Brexit uncertainty continues to dominate not only the political headlines but also the future trading and policy environment for farming and other rural businesses across the UK.
We have some clarity now with post-Brexit agricultural policy and schemes in England but there’s a lot we don’t know, including the extent to which new Environmental Land Management payments will contribute to farm/estate profits.
Developing a clear strategy based on the best and most profitable ways in which the farm business can utilise its core assets and strengths will be key. An integral part of this will be recognising and investing in the farm or estate’s natural capital assets.Read the full story
Over the winter, we were delighted to be asked by Crown Estate Scotland and a coalition of organisations to assess the applicability and usefulness of the Natural Capital Protocol for land-based businesses.
Working in partnership with AECOM, we tailored the Protocol to the land-based sector and trialled it with three land-based businesses – a lowland mixed farm, an upland cattle and sheep farm, and the wonderful Glenlivet Estate in the Cairngorms.
During the project we found that the Protocol helped improve understanding of natural capital and ecosystem services, related business dependencies and impacts, inter-dependencies between enterprises and the wider societal benefits delivered.
For a more detail report, including links to reports and press releases, please see our case study.
Jersey, as a Crown dependency, has the full range of responsibilities with regard to the management of its land and seas. Cumulus Consultants has worked with the States of Jersey over the past six years. As a small, flexible, multi-disciplinary consultancy, we have been ideally placed to dovetail with departmental colleagues, integrate different areas of expertise and provide additional capacity as required. Our recent work has included a Brexit impact assessment for the agriculture and fisheries sectors and a follow-on project with the dairy sector. For more on Jersey and the value of developing a long term working relationship please see our new case study.
Shellfish. Our work with Jersey led directly onto a challenging new project focused on the UK Shellfish sector. We were delighted to be asked by the National Federation of Fishermen’s Organisation, Scottish Fishermen’s Federation and Shellfish Association of Great Britain, to research trade flows in the UK shellfish sector and potential risks associated with the UK’s departure from the EU. Our work involved data analysis, interviews with shellfish businesses and an assessment of impacts. Our report is being used to inform Government in future discussions and negotiations. For more information please see the article in Fishing News.
We’re very pleased to welcome to our team:
Matt Rayment as an Associate; Matt is a highly experienced and well-regarded economist
Kelly Hedges as an Administrator to help improve our back-office systems and much valued additional support
The extra capacity has enabled us to secure ISO 9001 accreditation and achieve the IASME Governance Standard covering information assurance and data protection, including Cyber Essentials.
We’re positive about the future and very much look forward to working with you.
If you would like to chat about anything you’ve read above or anything we might be able to help with, please do give us a call.
Paul Silcock, Managing Director