The Government has agreed to further extend the slurry spreading period by 7 days.
The closed period will now commence on the 15th of October 2023 – farmers had sought an extension due to wet weather conditions preventing the application of slurry due to poor ground conditions.
Minister McConalogue says as the Government has to deliver on commitments to improving water quality, it is fundamental that slurry is applied under the right conditions and at the right time of year. Farmers are reminded to observe the Buffer Zones that apply at this time of the year to protect rivers and water bodies from run off.
Farmers are under pressure to dispose of existing stocks of slurry prior to housing livestock for the winter. The situation may be more difficult for farmers next year as the limits on the amount of nitrates can be applied will be lower per hectare of land in virtually all of Ireland. The derogation for most Irish farmers is to be reduced to 220kg/hectare from January 1st from the previous limit of 250kg/hectare due to concerns about water quality. Most other European Farmers have a limit of 170 kg/hectare.