FARMS in the Borders could benefit from a new security system following a successful trial in South Lanarkshire.

Thanks to funding from NFU Mutual, SelectaDNA kits could be rolled out to farmers in the region, and in other areas where there are repeat thefts on farms.

The equipment uses a forensic liquid with a DNA code which police can 'read' to identify where stolen property has come from.

In trials in South Lanarkshire the scheme has proved a success at deterring thieves.

NFU Mutual Scotland manager Mark McBrearty said: “Rural crime is hugely disruptive to Scotland’s farming community, and we are determined to do all we can to stamp it out.

“We’re delighted that SelectaDNA marking is proving so effective at reducing thefts from farms and are backing the speedy roll-out of the scheme by providing additional kits for distributions to Scottish farms.

“Since Police Scotland set up SPARC (Scottish Partnership Against Rural Crime) five years ago to bring together all those involved in the fight against rural crime, we’ve put our full backing into the initiative.”

The DNA scheme forms part of NFU Mutual's £400,000 pledge to help combat rural crime across the UK.

Inspector Alan Dron, Scotland’s national rural crime co-ordinator, said: “SelectaDNA is proving to be an excellent addition to the numerous initiatives and tactics we utilise when trying to prevent, reduce and tackle rural crime throughout Scotland.

“NFU Mutual’s additional funding means we can deploy yet more kits quickly and in other parts of Scotland, where thieves would potentially target agricultural and forestry machinery, plant, quad bikes, other all-terrain vehicles and expensive tools.”

To receive a kit, farmers, crofters, and land owners in the Borders can contact their local SPARC group.