The NFU is still battling to get pig and poultry businesses exempted from tough EU environmental rules, which were originally aimed at heavy industries like power stations, Farmers Weekly is reporting.
Changes to the rules could see more small pig and poultry farms in the UK, as well as those with feed mills, become swept up in its scope. In addition, existing IPPC farmers might be burdened with new bureaucracy.
The NFU has written to key commissioners and the Czech Presidency ahead of new discussions on the Integrated Pollution Prevention and Control (IPPC) Directive on 25 June. The NFU reiterated concerns that the directive is not appropriate for agriculture.
It argued that farms are unlike other businesses affected by IPPC, many being one- or two-person operations with little manpower to manage the demands.
Devastating impact on pig sector
The latest draft would have a particularly devastating impact on the pig sector. The NFU has estimated that a typical family farm, with 200 sows and their followers on-farm, would be included in the rules.
“In England, it would triple the number of pig farms, bringing an additional 600 under the rules.”
For existing pig and poultry producers, the NFU claim that the new draft would mean additional red tape with a need for new monitoring requirements, which may compromise animal welfare.