DURKAN AND O’NEILL EXTEND NITRATES DEROGATION APPLICATIONS DEADLINE TO 31 MAY

Admin 2 Press Releases, Stormont

The normal closing date for applications is 1 March but has been extended for this year only to 31 May to take account of the change in rules and enable more farmers to apply.
Explaining the reason for extending the deadline, Minister Durkan said: “We’re mindful there is a lot of uncertainty in the industry concerning the changes in rules for the agricultural payment schemes regarding the active farmer requirement. Some farmers may find they don’t have enough land available this year to meet the standard Nitrates Action Programme livestock manure limit of 170 kg nitrogen per hectare per year and could benefit from the increased limit available for derogated farms. For some the situation may only become clear when they have submitted their Single Application Form by the deadline of 15 May 2015.
“We have therefore agreed that, for 2015 only, the deadline for derogation applications will be extended until 31 May 2015. This will allow farmers time to consider their options once they see what land they have available.
“I want as many farmers as possible to benefit from this option and to that end my officials in NIEA will be working with farmers and the industry to promote derogation and improve productivity in a sustainable manner.”
Outlining the benefits of the Derogation, Minister O’Neill said: “Operating under a derogation is a useful option for intensive grassland cattle farmers, especially those in dairying. The derogation allows farmers to apply up to 250 kg nitrogen per hectare per year from grazing livestock manure, provided certain conditions are met. This enables the more highly stocked cattle farms to maximise nutrient efficiency and sustainable use of manures for grass production. It can eliminate the need to export manure or destock, reduce chemical fertiliser use and allow for businesses to grow and develop.
“My officials at CAFRE can offer advice on whether a derogation is the best option for farm businesses who may be considering applying for the first time this year. CAFRE offers Nitrates Derogation training courses that cover all aspects of nitrates derogation requirements and record keeping.
“For further advice and information please contact CAFRE on 0300-200-7841 to discuss your options.”
Further information and guidance on the derogation is available from the NIEA website
The existing guidance on operating under derogation is being updated with input from key stakeholders and the updated version will be available on DARD and NIEA websites shortly.

Admin 2DURKAN AND O’NEILL EXTEND NITRATES DEROGATION APPLICATIONS DEADLINE TO 31 MAY