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News / Offers
Launch of the Scottish Wild Harvests Association
- at the Big
Tent Festival, 25-26 July 2009
31 July 2009
Wild Harvests Association (SWHA) held its launch event as part
of the Big Tent festival's new Wild About Wood zone, in the idyllic
Falkand Palace orchard. Well-known chef and champion of locally-sourced
food, Christopher Trotter, welcomed the new association and announced
its formal launch. A lively discussion session followed, and discussions
continued throughout the weekend at the SWHA stall - helped along
by a bucket full of foraged cherries!
This was a great start for a group which will provide mutual support
for Scotland's wild harvests businesses, while helping to build
a well-informed network of foragers, and raise awareness of sustainable
harvesting codes and practices. SWHA is looking for more members,
both full and associate - join now to take advantage of the introductory
A Google map for foragers
20 July 2009
forage.rs is a new attempt to let
people map their favourite local foraging sites, started by a forager
who stays just south of Edinburgh. Give it a try, and let us know
what you think!
Wild Harvests of
Scotland events, April 09 - report published
5 June 2009
A full report of April's Wild
Harvests events is now available (PDF document 239KB)
Click here for background information about
Wild garlic coming
out of our ears?
27 April 2009
The Wild Harvests events earlier this month generated some welcome
media interest in Scotland's wild harvests, and in the new Scottish
Wild Harvests Association:
The Guardian, 27 April 2009: "Wild
harvest reaps big rewards in foraging rush"
Wild Harvests of Scotland:
building a sustainable forest culture
Birnam Arts & Conference Centre and Hilton Dunkeld House,
Perthshire, Wednesday 15th & Thursday 16th April 2009
Two days of events to celebrate and develop
Scotlands wild and woodland products sector
The programe included:
The Wild Harvests of Scotland Conference
A Slow Food feast
An evening celebrating the Orchards of Scotland
The inaugural meeting of the Scottish Wild Harvests Trade
More information here.
Funding for looking at collaborative marketing opportunities for Scottish berries
- an announcement from Berry Scotland
30 March 2009
"Imagine Scottish berries at every meal time as soup, salads,
puddings or drinks. Imagine replacing the fatty pie or chocolate
bar with a tub of Scottish berries - or giving blueberries to older
people or people with high blood pressure and raspberries to people
with high fat diet.
"Why not? We can change the food we eat if we work together.
Berry Scotland has been
given funding to glimpse into that future and see if it has support.
"If you have ideas or would like help in getting a berry-based
business off the ground we need your input. Contact Anne Thomson
on 01786 834342 or click
here to email Anne."
- wild harvests in the Borders
Buccleuch Arms Hotel, St Boswells, 15 February 2009
24 February 2009
This event was for everyone with an interest in foraging and wild
harvesting - with speakers on wild herbs, traditional plant lore
and sustainable harvesting, demonstrations of birch sap tapping
and mushroom log inoculation, and wild food & drink tasters.
Best of all, it was a chance to meet other people with an interest
in foraging and wild harvests.
The day was a great success, with over 70 people attending, and
it may be the start of something new - a Foragers' Forum
for the Scottish Borders.
is a report of the event, with links to contacts, info & suppliers,
on the Reforesting Scotland website.
Ways forward for Scotland's Wild Harvests Businesses
Glasgow (Pollok Visitor Centre), Thurs 20 November 2008
Abriachan Village Hall, near Inverness, Wed 26 November 2008
14 January 2009
This pair of meetings provided a chance for people across the Wild
Harvests sector to meet each other and to find out about issues
that concern them as a group, including the Scottish
Working Woods label, new government funding, and access rights
Each meeting also discussed ideas for a dedicated trade association
a collective presence to aid access to funding, training
and marketing opportunities, and to give the sector a voice in policy
A broad range of businesses and interests were represented at the
meetings. Participants were very positive about the benefits of
meeting each other and about future chances for building and strengthening
As a result of the meeting, a steering group was been formed to
take forward plans for a Scottish Wild Harvests trade association.
report on the meetings is available here (PDF document 381KB)
VisitScotland's new campaign highlights wild food
2 October 2008
National tourism organisation VisitScotland has developed
a new campaign on its eatscotland.com website to highlight all the
food based events happening in Scotland this autumn including a
number of foraging weekends. The Building
up an Appetite campaign details tour operators and accommodation
providers who offer foraging courses, many of which also incorporate
cookery skills and bushcraft techniques.
Cowberries in Scotland - information request
1 October 2008
"I am looking for information on the presence
and harvest of the cowberry in Northern Scotland for the purpose
of including it in a children's book on a circumpolar/circumboreal
look at the species.
More particularly, I am looking for an entry from a student between
the ages of 10 and 13 which would include a letter about the berry
(i.e. berry-picking,how it is used, etc.) a drawing, and a recipe
from his/her family.
This book will be supplementary to the book PARTRIDGEBERRY, EDBERRY,
LINGONBERRY, TOO just released (in August) by Boulder Publications
The book in process has entries from children in Alaska, Cape Breton,
Nunavut, Saskatchemwan, Newfoundland and Labrador, Quebec, Norway,
Sweden, and Japan.
I am very determined to include information on the berry in Scotland
and a student entry for this global look at the species.
I hope you are able to provide a contact person for me."
Ellen Bryan Obed
survey: "Whats in your basket?" - English and Polish
30 September 2008
Reforesting Scotland is carrying out a survey in order
to understand gathering on a national scale. Gathering fungi appears
to be becoming increasingly popular and we want to ensure that this
continues to be something everyone can enjoy. The survey will inform
our work promoting sustainable
here to take part in the survey.
Click here to download
a printable survey.
Zbieranie grzybów zdaje się zyskiwać
na popularności. Organizacja Zalesianie Szkocji przeprowadza
tę ankietę, aby w ramach naszej promocji ekologicznego
korzystania z owoców natury oraz poznać zwyczaje
zbierania grzybów w całym kraju. Pragniemy dowiedzieć się
jakiego rodzaju grzyby są zbierane i w jakich ilościach.
kliknąć tutaj, aby pobrać polską wersję ankiety.
here to take survey.
Bumper harvest of wild
fungi - but risks remain the same
11 September 2008
Conditions this year have meant a massive harvest
of edible fungi in Scotland, which more and more people are using
and enjoying. But a recent high profile poisoning case - Nicholas
Evans, author of The Horse Whisperer - reminds us of the
Many wild fungi are edible, many aren't, and a few
are extremely poisonous. There is no substitute for knowledge: a
good guide book is essential, and first-hand experience of going
out foraging with an expert is always the best way to learn. Look
out for notices of fungus forays around your area, and never, ever
eat any fungus you cannot reliably identify.
Whisperer author taken ill" - BBC News
for thought" - Aberdeen Press and Journal
fungi: delicous or deadly?" - BBC Scotland News
Rural Alternatives case studies published
23rd June 2008
After nearly two and a half years of working with four partner community woodland groups, Reforesting Scotland's Rural Alternatives project has now come to an end. Outputs from the project have been published on the Reforesting Scotland website, including articles, reports, and six case studies of non-timber forest product-based enterprises and activities - available to download on the new Rural Alternatives Shared Futures project reports page.
Non Timber Forest
Products at Royal Highland Show
23rd June 2008
invited to join the Lantra stall on 19 June at this year's Royal Highland Show.
Lantra are celebrating the success of their Online
Competence Framework for Crofters: Croft7 were there to demonstrate
various aspects of their business, including
hazel and willow work, natural dyeing, and fruiting landscapes/forest gardening.
details on the Lantra website.
Support and networking for
16th June 2008
Reforesting Scotland has just launched its new Wild
Harvests Sector Support project. This follows on from previous
work such as last year's Scottish
NTFP Sector Research and Development project and the 2006 Wild
Harvests seminar. The first planned project activity is to hold
two open meetings, one in the north and one in the south of the
country, to give people from the whole range of businesses, across the whole of Scotland,
the chance to meet, talk and hear more about developments that effect them as a group.
There is more information on the background to the project on
Harvests Sector Support project page on the Reforesting Scotland
Ongoing activities are described in the Trading
section of this website.
For more information or to get involved,
click here to email Emma Chapman.
A taste of the forest comes to Moffat
16th June 2008
Zacharry's is a new store which opened in Moffat at
the end of May. It is a family business, specialising in products
made from the Sitka spruce which grows abundantly on land owned
by the family at nearby Crookedstane. Goods on sale include spruce
quencher, spruce jelly, exclusive spruce and lemon flavoured dairy
ice cream, spruce chocolates, spruce burgers, spruce flavoured sausages
and a range of spruce teas.
Zacharry's is situated on 25 Well Street in Moffat
and will be open Mon - Saturday 9am to 5pm and Sunday 10am to 4pm.
available via the Zacharry's website.
Non Timber Forest
Products research workshop
16th June 2008
A small participatory workshop on “Non Timber Forest
Products: Opportunities and Barriers to Innovation”, was held at
Arts & Conference Centre, Birnam, Perthshire on 11 June 2008.
The workshop brought together representatives of businesses and
other organisations to discuss the nature, effectiveness and support
for non-wood product innovation in the forest sector, comparing
the situation in Scotland with that in other countries, in particular
Italy. The workshop findings will contribute to collaborative research
being undertaken across a number of European countries.
The workshop was organised by the Macaulay
Institute. For further information email
Diana Feliciano or phone 01224 498200 (Ext. 2362).
13th March 2008
The Natural History Museum reports that bluebells
have flowered in February for the first time in the UK.
This comes at the start of this year's online
survey of bluebells in the UK. For the third year running members
of the public are being asked to look at the bluebells in their
local environment, to help build up a picture of the distribution
of bluebell species within the UK. Is the native bluebell in danger
due to hybridisation with the non-native Spanish bluebell? You can
help find out.
Bulb Collection Code pages provide more information about bluebells,
and about the issues surrounding bulb harvesting in the UK and abroad.
More information about the trade in wildflower bulbs.
New 'Harvesting guidelines' section on ForestHarvest
8th January 2008
Happy New Year! ForestHarvest is celebrating the start
of 2008 by launching a new
section on Scotland's sustainable harvesting guidelines.
Sustainable Forest Harvest consultation
12th December 2007
What species or groups of species should Reforesting
Scotland's new Sustainable Forest Harvest project focus on? If you'd
like to make a suggestion, see Reforesting Scotland's Sustainable
Forest Harvest project page for more details.
Reforesting Scotland launches a new project
28th November 2007
Sustainable Forest Harvest - Monitoring NTFP harvests
Scotland is pleased to announce the start of a new project to
develop participatory monitoring and harvesting guidelines for selected
NTFP species in Scotland.
More details on the ForestHarvest
Amazing mosses, fantastic fungi and incredible lichens: new project to boost their conservation in Scotland
28th November 2007
A new project led by Plantlife Scotland will celebrate the amazing world of mosses, liverworts, lichens and fungi and the extraordinary richness that exists in Scotland. In a bid to help their conservation and raise awareness of their importance, the newly launched Lower Plants and Fungi project will be providing advice on managing key habitats for rare and threatened species and organising events for people to learn more about them.
Plantlife's new Lower Plant and Fungi Officer is Matilda Scharsach, based in Stirling. She can be contacted on 01786 469778 or click here to email Matilda Scharsach.
New harvesting guidelines - mosses and bulbs
18th September 2007
As NTFP harvesting becomes more popular as part of
people's lives and work, concerns are rising about the possible
impacts of harvesting. Two new sets of harvesting guidelines - one
for mosses and one for bulbs - are now available to help with this
The codes have been produced in consultation with
moss harvesters, land managers, species experts and representatives
of conservation organisations.
A5 leaflets containing the essentials of the guidelines
are available from:
Dr Dave Genney, Scottish Natural Heritage, Great Glen House, Leachkin
Road, Inverness, IV3 8NW, Tel: 01463 725253 (click
here to email Dave Genney)
here for more information about Scotland's sustainable harvesting guidelines.
Mushroom picking ban in a mid Wales nature reserve
14th September 2007
"A nature reserve in mid Wales is banning all visitors from picking wild mushrooms because it says some species are in decline." Full story on the BBC Wales website
Local fungus expert Daniel Butler has been leading fungus forays in the Elan Estate since 1998. He says the ban, imposed by the Elan Valley Trust, is both unenforceable and unscientific, and that he would defy it. More details on the BBC Wales website
Neolithic chewing gum
19th August 2007
Modern day Finns have found some ingenious uses for their abundance of birch trees, including
making a sugar alcohol called xylitol which is used in tooth-friendly chewing gum.
Now one of the world's oldest pieces of chewing gum has been found. It's from Finland - and it was made from birch trees. The Stone Age version was made by heating birch bark in the absence of air, to produce a tar. Like its more high tech counterpart, it also had chemical properties which aided dental health.
Metro.co.uk: "World's oldest chewing gum found"
Kierikki archaelogical centre: "Friday 13th of July was the lucky day at Kierikki Excavation"
9-10th June 2007
Popular annual event celebrating all things woody.
This year as part of its diverse display, Reforesting
Scotland showed examples of Scottish non-timber products and
distributed leaflets explaining about the new Scottish
Working Woods label.
New woodland products label launched at Touchwood
Touchwood Festival, combined with this year's Scottish
WOODfair and held in Dingwall, was a 2-day event to showcase
the diversity of the Highlands trees, woods, forests and environment,
and networking businesses throughout the 'wood chain', from tree
nurseries to wood product manufacturers.
Reforesting Scotland helped to bring a
non-wood presence to the event as well, through the Rural
Alternatives project, through displaying examples of products
from forest harvest businesses, and by its involvement with the new Scottish Working Woods label.
The Scottish Working Woods label was
launched at Touchwood, with representatives from trade associations,
the Forestry Commission, the press, and woodland products businesses
among others. Refreshments included wild garlic cheese and rowan
berry jelly kindly donated by local businesses. The label is
designed to promote both timber and non-timber products from Scotland's
The Earths Blanket
A talk for Reforesting Scotland by Professor
Royal Botanic Garden,
Professor Nancy Turner, an ethnobotanist from the
University of Victoria, British Columbia, gave a talk based on her
recent book, The Earth's Blanket, which explores the wealth
of ecological knowledge and spiritual connection to the natural
world that is fundamental to indigenous cultures and lifeways.
Nancy is the author of dozens of books and other
publications on plant use by the First Nations of the Pacific
North West and is an honorary clan member of several groups.
She is also very interested in how we in Scotland value our
plants and their traditional and contemporary use.
NTFP Sector Research
31 March 2007
Reforesting Scotland completed an NTFP Sector Research
and Development Project at the end of March 2007, exploring ways
of supporting Scotland's wild harvesting businesses. The report
on the responses from businesses is expected to inform future plans
for networking and marketing for the sector.
A big thank you to everyone who participated in this
More details on the projects
Willow suppliers in Scotland - a dedicated website
Many basketmakers, garden landscapers and others looking
for willow end up sourcing willow from England or further afield,
when we have a lot of willow growing in Scotland.
is a new website which aims to make it easier for willow users to
find willow suppliers. It's been set up using information from research
done by Reforesting Scotland in 2004 - information which may of
course be out of date; this voluntary project now needs willow users
and suppliers to get in touch to help make the list complete and
here to email Willow Scotland.
The information collected will also feed into the
ForestHarvest business directory.
Last updated: 31jul09
Offers and requests
Below are requests relating to just some of the trading
in wild products going on in Scotland at present. More can
be found via the business directory.
Tree seed collection - new sites & collectors
Nurseries are looking for people who may be interested
in seed collecting or who own sites that may be of use for
seed collecting. We are interested in a number of tree species
from across Scotland and pay for seed per Kg. For more information
on species, quantities and prices please call Sam on 01948
Produce specialise in the harvesting of problem sites
of rhododendron for the bouquet industry, and are currently
looking for sites in Scotland. They need reasonable access
and blemish and pest-free stems. They pay estates 1p a stem
and prefer large sites, as they can cut 50,000 stems per week.
They are also willing to deal with freelancers,
who would be trained by them and would then work on a piece
Contact Forest Produce UK manager Bev Stephenson
- 0789 6859445 or 01830 540025.
Flavour and fragrance company Ungerer Ltd are
currently in the market for bog myrtle. If interested please
email either Steven
Caldwell or Sue
Morgan, or telephone 01244 371711.
Seed collectors wanted
are looking for collectors throughout Scotland - in particular
the north and west - who can provide the skill, means and
expertise to make collections of seed of a number of wildflower
species. Ring 01356 626425 or click
here to email.
Scotia Seeds follows the Flora
Locale Code of Practice for collectors, growers and suppliers
of native flora.
Anyone who is coppicing for charcoal
John Sanderson is interested in getting in contact
with anyone in the East Lothian area who is involved in coppicing
for charcoal. Click here to email John
Thinking of gathering blaeberries next season?
Alloa-based Ella Drinks would
love to buy Scottish blaeberries for their blaeberry drink.
(You might find berry
scoops a useful aid to gathering them.)
Holly foliage - anywhere in Scotland
central-Scotland based horticultural company, arelooking to
buy large quantities of holly foliage - 3-4 inch tips - long
hedges in need of a trim are ideal. Will travel anywhere in
Scotland to harvest, during November and December.
Phone Brian Gray on 0781 2011298.
More information about holly in the ForestHarvest species directory.