Firms win bio­sphere recog­ni­tion

The Galloway News - - DISTRICT NEWS -

The Gal­loway and South­ern Ayr­shire UNESCO Bio­sphere Part­ner­ship has awarded eight busi­nesses the bio­sphere cer­ti­fi­ca­tion mark.

The com­pa­nies, from a cross sec­tion of in­dus­tries rang­ing from food, tourism, forestry, hor­ti­cul­ture and pub­lish­ing were recog­nised for sup­port­ing sus­tain­abil­ity and bio­di­ver­sity in the bio­sphere.

The pre­sen­ta­tion took place at Gled­park Deer Park at Borgue on the In­ter­na­tional Day for Bi­o­log­i­cal Diver­sity.

Lifelong ecologist Chris Miles, who re­cently re­tired as re­gional man­ager for Scot­tish Na­tional Her­itage (SNH) and is a for­mer chair­man of the Gal­loway and South­ern Ayr­shire Bio­sphere Nat­u­ral Her­itage group, made the awards along with South of Scotland MSP Emma Harper.

Chris said: “It’s fan­tas­tic to see busi­nesses in the re­gion recog­nis­ing the opportunit­ies that the UNESCO Bio­sphere presents by pro­mot­ing and en­hanc­ing their sus­tain­abil­ity cre­den­tials and par­tic­u­larly apt to be mak­ing these awards on In­ter­na­tional Bio­di­ver­sity Day when we should all be look­ing at how we can change our ac­tions to ben­e­fit the nat­u­ral world. Af­ter all, the bio­sphere vi­sion is all about ben­e­fit­ing peo­ple and na­ture.”

Emma Harper added: “I am fa­mil­iar with a num­ber of the busi­nesses re­ceiv­ing this award – in­clud­ing Ru­pert Shaw, who I have vis­ited at his veni­son farm on nu­mer­ous oc­ca­sions – and un­der­stand the great pas­sion there is among busi­nesses to en­sure sus­tain­abil­ity for both their busi­ness and the en­vi­ron­ment which sur­rounds them.

“I look for­ward to ar­rang­ing vis­its with all eight busi­nesses to re­ceive this award and to learn more about how their ac­tions are ben­e­fit­ing and con­tribut­ing to the Gal­loway and South­ern Ayr­shire Bio­sphere.”

Event host Ru­pert Shaw, the re­gional chair of NFU Scotland, re­ceived the award for his veni­son at Gled­park.

He said: “Re­ceiv­ing my bio­sphere cer­ti­fi­ca­tion on Na­tional Bio­di­ver­sity Day sim­ply re­in­forces my be­lief that com­mer­cial farm­ing and de­liv­er­ing for the en­vi­ron­ment do go hand in hand.

“I take great pride in my veni­son pro­duc­tion and I am proud of where I live and farm in Kirkcud­bright – in the heart of the Gal­loway and South­ern Ayr­shire UNESCO Bio­sphere.

“I have a cus­tomer base that in­cludes cook­ery schools, ho­tels and restau­rants and hav­ing this valu­able cer­ti­fi­ca­tion pro­vides them with fur­ther re­as­sur­ance on the high stan­dards of veni­son pro­duc­tion and en­vi­ron­men­tal pro­tec­tion that we de­liver on our farm.”

The other busi­nesses in­clude Gal­loway Flow­ers, Brook­ford B and B and Curly Tale Books.

Part­ner­ship chair­man, Joan Mitchell, said: “UNESCO’s Bio­spheres are the world’s only glob­ally recog­nised des­ig­na­tion for re­gions demon­strat­ing ex­cel­lence in sus­tain­able de­vel­op­ment.

“Our bio­sphere can bring real value to our ru­ral busi­nesses and com­mu­ni­ties by lever­ag­ing the pow­er­ful UNESCO brand. The bio­sphere cer­ti­fi­ca­tion mark which is for both ser­vices and prod­uct la­belling is a great recog­ni­tion to those busi­nesses sup­port­ing sus­tain­abil­ity.”

Out­stand­ing Eight busi­nesses have re­ceived the bio­sphere cer­ti­fi­ca­tion mark

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