Feb 22 2013 By Kaiya Marjoribanks
Nearly 150 youngsters are learning about food and farming at Stirling Agricultural Centre with The Royal Highland Education Trust.
RHET is a charity that provides learning opportunities about farming and food production, the outdoors, countryside, including forestry and estate management, and environmental awareness for 3-18-year-old children in Scotland.
In cooperation with United Auctions and the local agricultural community, the event at SAC will create the opportunity for P6 children from several Forth Valley schools to take the classroom to the countryside.
The event is sponsored by the Scottish Government and the objective is to provide a hands-on educational and fun experience for pupils by exposing them to elements of local farming and food production while in support of curriculum for excellence.
To start the event the children will take part in a mock auction with livestock, which in past years has been a huge hit.
Activity providers and RHET volunteers will run the sessions for the children. SRUC are covering cereals, where wheat grinding to make flour and popcorn making will take place.
Willie Crawford will be providing a butchery demonstration while Briarlands Farm and Balqhatstone Mains will be engaging the children in a discussion on fruit and veg.
Callum McNeil will show the children different livestock and staff from The Reekie Group will help children understand what machinery is used on farms and for what processes.
Tesco will provide a cheese tasting session and a fibreglass cow will be on show at the dairy session, given by John Owen. Graham’s Dairies are providing samples of ice cream for the children.
A spokesperson said: “RHET Forth Valley CI is grateful to United Auctions for allowing the event to be held on-site.
“The Scottish food, farming and countryside industries are very supportive of RHET, as the trust builds bridges between farmers, producers and pupils, who are the consumers of the future.
“At present RHET has direct contact with one in eight pupils in Scotland. However, it aims to reach a target of one in four by 2020.
“Teachers can use RHET’s resources and services, which are free to schools in Scotland, to deliver curriculum for excellence as experiential outcomes.
“A classroom speaker or a visit to a farm provides opportunities for young people to engage with those who live and work in the countryside and will give the pupils an enhanced and practical understanding of how their food gets from farm to fork.”
The 152nd National Stallion Show takes place at Stirling Agricultural Centre on Saturday, March 2.
Twenty-eight in-hand classes will be judged: 11 classes of Clydesdale horses, seven of Highland ponies, nine of Shetland ponies plus two for Shetland pony young handlers.
N Christie of Daldarn, Balfron, will be among the judges for the Clydesdale stallion premiums.