Amidst all the show cancellations there is glimmer of hope of a return to normality as directors of AgriScot plan for the event to carry on as scheduled on Wednesday November 18.
AgriScot chairman and Borders farmer, Robert Neill, said: “We are desperately sorry for events including the Royal Highland Show that have had to take the unavoidable decision to cancel. The absence of summer shows will be keenly felt by the farming community.”
“We hope by the time AgriScot takes place in November the event can play a part in life and business returning to some form of normality.
"Planning is proceeding on that basis and the portal for trade exhibitor online applications will be opened in May.”
Mr Neill also announced Agriscot had recently signed a five year agreement with the Royal Highland Centre team to ensure the use of the facilities at Ingliston.
Agriscot uses the majority of the showground’s indoor facilities for its one day event.
“As we look at plans for 2020, and indeed for future years, the current situation regarding Covid-19 has focused our minds on how we can further reach out to audiences who may be unable to physically attend the event for any reason", added Mr Neill.
“Over the past four or five years our live streaming from the AgriScot ring, mainly of the cattle judging and farm of the year award presentations, has been extremely well received by audiences as far afield as Canada.
"This technology opens up opportunities for us to live stream further elements of the event and even, should circumstances deem it necessary, to provide an established platform to stage the seminars and other elements of the event in a “virtual” fashion.”
Regarding the various farm of the year and other awards annually presented by AgriScot, Mr Neill said: “With farming businesses throughout Scotland, and indeed the people behind them, facing unprecedented challenges at present, we are conscious the normal farm of the year award process will have to adapt to circumstances.”
“The AgriScot directors, along with our award sponsors and supporters will continue to monitor the situation and we will look to launch the awards in the early summer.