The European Union has introduced a ban on the use of Plant Protection Products (PPPs) on nitrogen fixing crops and fallow land declared as Ecological Focus Area (EFA) for scheme year 2018. Further clarification is being sought as to whether the ban also applies to seed dressings.
In the case of nitrogen fixing crops, the ban will apply from sowing to harvest. In practice this means that the ban applies to nitrogen fixing crops sown in autumn 2017 that you intend to declare as EFA for the 2018 scheme year. In the case of fallow land, the ban will apply during the EFA fallow period which is 1 February 2018 to 31 July 2018 inclusive.
If you declare nitrogen fixing crops or fallow land as EFA you will be required to confirm via your 2018 Single Application Form that you are aware of the ban on the use of PPPs on these areas and have complied with the requirement.
Download further information regarding the ban on the use of PPPs including a 'Q&A' The Q&A will be updated as further information becomes available.
If you decide to continue using PPPs on areas of nitrogen fixing crops and fallow land you must not use these areas for EFA purposes and you should consider other EFA options to ensure that you meet the minimum EFA requirement for your holding. Details of the other EFA options can be found in the 2017 Guide to the Greening Payment
Farmers should also note that the European Union has approved the sowing of mixtures of wild flower seeds on fallow land declared for EFA purposes.
Notes to editors:
The changes to the “greening” provisions are set out in Commission Delegated Regulation (EU) 2017/1155 which was published the Official Journal of the European Union on 30 June 2017.
All media queries should be directed to the DAERA Press Office on 028 9052 4619 or via email Out of office hours please contact the duty press officer via pager number 07623 974 383 and your call will be returned.
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