Green Futures Mull
Green Futures Mull is a social enterprise that has united farmers and environmentalists. Set up by the Mull and Iona Community Trust to promote the sustainable development of local resources, Green Futures first venture has been to support the community in buying the last independent butchers shop on the island.
Selling local produce direct from the farm will create jobs, provide better prices for local farmers and crofters, and by helping to support livestock farming, will help maintain the ecosystem and wildlife, so important for the tourism industry.
The only other butcher on the land is part of the Co-op, and the trust is hopeful that the store may take the new shop's local meat. Mull once had three butcher's shops but the last one closed a year ago. The trust bought it for £50,000 and, with the help of local contractors giving time for free, has given it a make-over.
The Lottery's Scottish Land Fund supplied 75 per cent of the £50,000 needed to buy the shop. 75 per cent of the remainder was supplied by the Highland and Islands Community Land Unit, and £4,000 was raised from community donations, mainly from within the local community.
The shop now provides an invaluable outlet for consolidating the local abattoir. The abattoir, near the village of Salen, has been run for 22 years as a voluntary farmers' co-operative. But transport costs and the roundabout nature of modern markets had put it in jeopardy. That's where the butcher's shop has come in.
Pat Logan from Mull and Iona Community Trust explained how things had worked before the shop was opened
"The system was a nonsense," said Pat, "The beef was fattened here then sold off the island so that, if you wanted it, you had to buy it back in.
"Six or seven vans come into Mull and supply the local shops, B&Bs and hotels with food from elsewhere. That's a travesty. We want to service local demand with local produce."
Such has been the impact of Green Futures Mull that it was selected as one of two UK island projects chosen by Shell Better Britain to be represented as a model of best practice at the World Summit on Environmental and Sustainable Economic Development in Johannesburg earlier this year.
For further information, contact:
Business Development Projects Officer
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