Human waste suspected of being dumped by a passing aircraft has been found littered across farmland near Kettering, Northamptonshire.
Ian Clegg from Brooklands Farm found effluent including human faeces and sanitary towels spread across 10ha of grassland while inspecting livestock on Tuesday (5 October).
“It’s spread across fields growing animal feed, which we’ve been told by the vet we have to dig up and burn,” he told the Evening Telegraph. “It’s destroyed £8000 worth of crops, at a conservative estimate.”
The Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) has launched an investigation to try and identify any planes that were in the area at the time, but they were sceptical the waste had come from an aircraft.
CAA spokesman Richard Taylor said Kettering had a busy airspace with planes flying into Stansted, Luton and East Midlands Airports flying overhead, and a transatlantic route, but aircraft did not flush their toilets into the air.
Problems with pipes did occur occasionally, but they would only release water which would immediately turn to ice, he said.
Environment Agency officers attended the scene on Wednesday (6 October) fearing the pollution could have affected a nearby stream.
An Environment Agency spokesman said: “One of our Environment Officers visited the farm in order to check that a nearby river had not been polluted. Tests carried out by the officer confirmed that water was not polluted. We have not advised the farmer that the crops should be destroyed.”
Mr Clegg said he had to move his sheep and cattle indoors and have them checked over by vets at great expense.
The Civil Aviation Authority could not prosecute airlines directly, but people who had suffered damage could pursue them for costs, said Mr Taylor.