SEFARI – Scottish Environment, Food and Agriculture Research Institutes

SEFARI aims to deliver ‘Leading Ideas for Better Lives’, reflecting that publicly funded research in Scotland must ultimately deliver positive impact for individuals, whether in Scotland or elsewhere.

As a collective, we collaborate to deliver the Scottish Government funded Strategic Research Programme 2016-2021 on agriculture, environment, food and land.

Case Studies

Major weight loss in pregnant cows harms the development of their calves

Body condition scoring is a rapid way to assess fat coverage of livestock. In cattle it is scored on a 1 (lean) to 5 (obese) scale.

  • Plant and Animal Health
  • Agriculture
  • Animal Health & Welfare

Ecological Resilience – woodlands and tree pests/pathogens

Risk assessments of plant pests/pathogens rarely account for potential impacts on biodiversity associated with the affected host.

  • Climate and the Environment
  • Plant and Animal Health

Ecosystem resilience – woodland establishment on heather moorland and carbon budgets

Woodland expansion is a key part of the Scottish and Westminster Governments’ plans to meet net zero carbon emission targets by 2045 and 2050 respectively.

  • Climate and the Environment
  • Land and Communities

Should we graze the uplands of Scotland?

The continued grazing of the uplands is contentious as the goals of rewilding and farming/crofting often appear in conflict.

  • Agriculture
  • Climate and the Environment


12 May 2021

Eat them to beat them: Can Invasive Plants be Harnessed to Provide a Sustainable Source of Protein?

Agriculture bears the brunt of having to reliably supply food, ensure its own economic viability, while complying with environmental concerns. Farming comes under a lot of pressure to deliver produce, despite unfavourable climatic variation, changes in pest behaviour and the control of invasive plants.

12 Apr 2021

Why we need to consider the role of plants in the spread of zoonotic pathogens

Zoonotic pathogens are microorganisms transmitted by animals, which cause disease and illness in humans. Many of them are foodborne and are commonly associated with farmed animals, or less frequently with wildlife.


22 Jun 2021

Farmers and crofters – can you help shape the future of farming practices in Scotland?

"There is increasing interest amongst policy makers about agroecological farming approaches – and whether these types of practices improve sustainability and how they can increase the resilience of agricultural businesses in Scotland to cope with external shocks such as the COVID-19 crisis, biodiversity loss or clim

21 Jun 2021

International Barley Hub Seminar Series: Barley Varieties - The Recommendation System

"Barley breeders are continually developing new varieties and introducing them into the market; it is not always easy for the farmer understand which of the new varieties might suit their farming system."


1 Nov 2021

UN Climate Change Conference UK 2021

The COP26 summit will bring parties together to accelerate action towards the goals of the Paris Agreement and the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change.

12 Aug 2021

Potatoes in Practice 2021

Potatoes in Practice is the largest filed-based potato event in the UK.

5 Jul 2021

Food & Drink Expo

One of the UK’s largest and most well-respected food and drink focused trade exhibitions, Food & Drink Expo is a biennial event for the grocery, food service, wholesale, manufacturing and speciality retail markets.


29 Jun 2021

Arable Scotland 2021

Arable Scotland seeks to bring together those working in food production, from farmers to distillers and exporters, to demonstrate and discuss key industry issues such as innovative and sustainable farming.



1 hour ago

RT @SoilsHutton: Researchers @JamesHuttonInst and @SRUC are carrying out a survey about reducing soil erosion risks for a CREW-funded proje…


4 hours ago

RT @FFC_Commission: 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁳󠁣󠁴󠁿Can you help us shape the evidence for fair and sustainable farming practices in Scotland? 📝Take our short onl…