Complicated regulations

AN increasing number of farmers and landowners are finding themselves in breach of cross compliance regulations, due to the growing complexity of the systems in place.

Graeme Bruce, of Youngs Chartered Surveyers, has warned that this could result in fines or loss of payment.

Failure to report animal movements or death within the correct timescale, lost tags and non- or incorrect completion of the Soil Protection Survey, are all fairly common trangressions. More worrying, are the unintentional errors that farmers are being caught out on.

Bruce said: “The claims system has become so complicated it is very easy to make a mistake without meaning to and there are a whole host of issues which can result in incorrect recording errors.”

There are a number of things that farmers should be aware of, including environmental stewardship, single payment schemes, cattle grazing records, record keeping, housekeeping and dual use. All must be kept up to standard. Anyone at all unsure about any of these issues is urged to seek professional assistance. The requirements can also be found in SPS guidance and on the relevant Defra websites.