NFU wins NVZ reprieve for livestock farmers

Livestock farmers could be spared costly investment after DEFRA agreed to defer introducing NVZ rules to farmers with relatively low nitrate levels.

The NFU said it secured a 12-month postponement on updated slurry storage rules for farms with a strong case to be exempt from NVZs.

About 5000 farmers are expected to benefit from the extension, which would have seen farms in designated NVZs forced to comply with legislation before 1 January 2010.

The delay means those farmers will avoid having to comply with the legislation by building additional slurry storage before they hear if their land will be removed from the NVZ list.

Peter Kendall, NFU president, said the deferment could save farmers hundreds of thousands of pounds.

“This could potentially save some members tens of thousands of pounds from not having to build (what we have always argued) was unnecessary storage in the first place,” he added.