Poultry integrator Moy Park has been fined £30,000 after complaints from local residents over offensive smells from a poultry farm in Lincolnshire.
The company admitted breaching the conditions of its operating permit, in connection with protecting the environment, during a hearing before Boston magistrates.
The court heard that between October 2007 and November 2009 the Environment Agency had received more than 140 complaints about the smell from the Menzies Poultry Unit at Sibsey, Boston.
When the agency then began an investigation, it was found that Moy Park had not been following current advice on how to limit odour from poultry units.
“The company failed to follow its own odour management plan,” said prosecutor Anne-Lise McDonald. “It did not maintain the site infrastructure, follow good housekeeping practice, carry out odour monitoring or properly investigate the cause of odours coming from the site.”
Agency officers found shed doors left open, damp litter, badly maintained hard standing and incorrect segregation of rainwater from dirty water. Misting nozzles designed to keep smells under control were also poorly placed.
In mitigation, it was said that Moy Park had closed down the site in 2009 as it was no longer considered suitable for operations.
A spokesman said following the case: “Moy Park has worked closely with the Environment Agency to ensure compliance with its permit conditions and to improve its environmental performance at its poultry farms in Lincolnshire, with the aim of reducing the risks of such incidents happening in the future.
“The company is investing in new plant and working methods to significantly reduce the risk of such incidents happening again.”
The company was also ordered to pay £12,000 costs.