The Department of Agriculture, Food & the Marine has announced that interim Nitrogen and Phosphorus statements (N&P Statements) for the period January to May 2019 are now available on the Department’s online system www.agfood.ie.
These statements are particularly useful to allow farmers to plan for the remainder of the year, in order to ensure compliance with the limits of the Nitrates Regulations, thus avoiding penalties for breaching the limits of 170 kgs of Nitrogen per hectare or the limit for those who hold an approved derogation is 250 kgs of Nitrogen per hectare.
Farmers not already registered for agfood.ie can do so by logging onto www.agfood.ie and clicking the 'Register' button. To register a mobile phone number for future SMS text alerts log on to https://www.agriculture.gov.ie/contactsupdates/ to access the sign-on form.
Each year a small proportion of Irish farmers lose income in the Nitrates Regulations, the Department of Agriculture has said.
The Department advises that farmers can avoid these penalties by taking action during the year.
Farmers can avoid penalties through a range of options, including exporting slurry during the year to less intensively stocked farms or renting extra land and submitting the appropriate forms to the Department.
Another option is monitoring their livestock numbers throughout the year and reducing them where there is a risk of exceeding the limit.
The Department has encouraged all farmers who exported slurry, rented extra land or temporarily moved cattle to another holding to submit the appropriate forms as soon as possible () to the Nitrates section, Johnstown Castle, Wexford.
Those farmers that are most likely to exceed the limit based on Departmental data have received a text message outlining their stocking rate to the end of October.
Any farmer that is unsure about their position should or Nitrates section at 053-9163444.
Under the regulations, farmers are obliged to ensure that the total amount of Nitrogen (N) from organic manure applied to their own lands (including that deposited by the animals themselves) does not exceed 170kg of N per hectare (NPH) per year, i.e. equivalent to two dairy cows per hectare.
Farmers can apply for a , which allows them to farm up to 250kg NPH per year, subject to some additional conditions being met.
Information above has being taken from the Department of agriculture website and article in Agri land website.