NFU and National Pig Association lobbying, and the support of DEFRA minister Jane Kennedy has seen MEPs vote against some of the proposed changes to the Integrated Pollution Prevention and Control Directive (IPPC) directive which would have seen many smaller pig and poultry farms face stringent environmental measures.
There was disappointment however that MEPs backed “Equivalent Nitrogen Rates”, which could affect more than 300 pig units, as well as many poultry units. This proposal will see some units which are below the thresholds for individual species, but housing a mixture – such as sows and finishing pigs on pig units or chickens, ducks or turkeys on poultry units – coming under the rules.
NFU deputy president Meurig Raymond said: “I would like to thank MEPs and ministers, particularly Jane Kennedy, for their support which added significant weight to the vote. This has given us clear priorities for the next stage when the directive goes to council.
“IPPC is by far the most comprehensive environmental regime we have seen and the effects of these changes could be very serious, adding significant costs and burdens, especially to smaller pig and poultry units. There is still plenty of time to defeat these rules before they are rubber-stamped by EU ministers and I remain committed to lobbying for the amendments to be rejected.”