Welsh sheep farmers risk cross-compliance fines from of a zero tolerance approach within Wales’ new electronic sheep movement reporting system.
According to NFU Cymru, the Welsh government’s proposal that there be no degree of error after EID Cymru is rolled out on 1 January 2015 is unfair.
Responding to the government’s EID Cymru consultation, Lyndon Edwards, NFU Cymru’s livestock board chairman, said it was impossible for the system to operate without some errors occurring.
“This must be accepted and farmers must not have to live with the threat of cross-compliance penalties hanging over their business as a result of the failure of technology to work with 100% accuracy 100% of the time,” he said.
The Welsh government also wants sheep movements reported electronically within 24 hours. But Mr Edwards says the timeframe is too tight.
“We are concerned that problems with computers, internet connections or other technical issues would leave farmers exposed to the risk of cross-compliance fines for late reporting if there was a requirement to do this within 24 hours,” he said.
“The consultation paper has judged three days to be an adequate time period to report paper movements therefore we believe all movements should be subject to the same reporting period.’’
The EU regulatory requirement that makes individual recording and reporting compulsory remains deeply unpopular with farmers, Mr Edwards added. “We continue to use every available opportunity to push for a fundamental review of the current EID regulation.”