Farming Facts

Supporting the local economy

Red meat is worth around £2.3 billion of Scotland’s food and drink industry supporting the employment of around 50,000 people. We produce red meat from Cattle, Sheep, Pigs, Goats and Deer - the three main animals are cattle, sheep and pigs.

Caretakers of the land

Scotland’s livestock farmers are passionate about looking after our iconic countryside and play a vital role in sustaining the Red Meat Industry. Farmers are caretakers of the land, proud to keep improving it sustainably for future generations.

Scottish Livestock Farming Facts to Remember

  • Respectfully reared w

    1.73 million Scottish Cattle

    There are 1.73 million cattle in Scotland. About 80% are kept to produce meat (beef cattle), and the rest are kept to produce milk (dairy cattle).

  • Breeds w

    Over 200 Breeds of Cattle

    There are over 200 different cattle breeds in the UK. The breed of cattle a farmer has is determined by the type of farm they have.

  • Landscape w

    80% Farmland Perfect for Livestock

    82% of Scotland is not suitable for growing crops, vegetables or fruit but much of it is perfect for growing grass and feeding cattle and sheep.

  • Sheep w

    6.59 million Scottish Sheep

    The main reason farmers keep sheep in Scotland is because of their meat, not their wool.

  • Sheep w

    Over 90 Breeds of Sheep

    There are more than 90 different breeds and crosses of sheep in the UK.

  • Pig w

    319,000 pigs in Scotland

    There are around 319,000 pigs in Scotland. The most popular pig breeds in Scotland are Large Whites, Landrace, Red Duroc, White Duroc and Hampshire

Play Find The Facts

Find out how much you already know about the red meat food system by playing ‘Find the Facts’. It's a simple true or false game - can you get all the questions correct first time though?

Click on the spinner button and wait for the statement to reveal.

Find facts game

Watch and Learn

  • On the Farm

    Farmers Andrew and Lauren talk about the cattle, sheep and wild animals that all live at Glenkilrie Farm.

  • High Standards

    Farmer Andrew talks about how he keeps his animals healthy and procedures he follows to ensure he meets the high standards required to produce Scotch Lamb UK GI and Scotch Beef UK GI.

  • Tracing livestock

    Farmers Kirsty and Emma talk about their mixed farm in central Scotland and how they use ear tags and passports to ensure the Scotch Lamb and Scotch Beef they produce is fully traceable.

  • A year in cattle farming

    Find out about a year in the life of the cattle and the work involved in farming cattle in Scotland.

  • A year in sheep farming

    Learn about a year in the life of the sheep at this Scottish livestock farm and how they are looked after.

  • The sheep dog

    A sheep dog is vital part of team for Scottish sheep farmers – find out how farmer Kirsty trains her dogs.

Learn About Sustainable Farming

Journey into the Scotch Difference

Let us take you on a journey into what makes Scotch Beef, Lamb and Pork so special, and how we produce such high-quality meat that’s renowned and enjoyed worldwide.