News from AgriWales - A blog about everything and anything that's happening
Defra has confirmed BPS entitlements and greening rates for 2018, after the exchange rate was set.
Both entitlements and greening rates will rise for non-severely disadvantaged areas (SDA) and upland SDA, other than moorland. Payments will start landing in farmers’ bank accounts from Monday December 3.
There are height limits in place to ensure that drones are used safely. Drones are restricted from flying above 400 feet (122 metres) and within 1 kilometre of airport boundaries. Also, owners of drones weighing 250 grams or more are required to register with the Civil Aviation Authority with drone pilots having to take an online safety test. These requirements come into force on 30th November 2019. If drone users flout the new height and airport boundary restrictions, they could be charged with recklessly or negligently acting in a manner likely to endanger an aircraft or any person in an aircraft which could result in an unlimited fine, up to 5 years in prison or both. Failure to register or sit the competency tests could result in users being fined up to £1,000.00.
Total sales of antibiotics for use in animals in the UK have fallen to their lowest level since 1993, according to Defra’s Veterinary Medicines Directorate.
The Veterinary Antimicrobial Resistance Sales and Surveillance (VARSS) report shows that sales of antibiotics for use in food-producing animals dropped by 18% between 2016 and 2017 to reach a low of 37 mg/kg. Sales have also dropped by 40% between 2013 and 2017.
For the first time, the annual report presents data on the use of antibiotics in beef, trout and salmon in addition to usage in the poultry, pig, dairy, gamebird and egg-laying hen industries.
For more see: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/sales-of-veterinary-antibiotics-at-their-lowest-in-25-years?utm_source=fe99a90c-6fe8-4f3f-b6d3-1c2493659e20&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=govuk-notifications&utm_content=immediate
Reform of existing tax measures could be on the horizon for owners of land approved for development.
A report published in September 2018 by the Housing, Communities and Local Government Committee suggested that the significant increase in the value of agricultural land when planning permission is granted for residential use should be reflected in more robust taxation. Land worth only thousands on the agricultural market can realise millions when approved for housing.
The Committee highlighted the fact that landowners had the potential to make multi-millions in profits when their land is sold on for major development. Given that this is only made possible by the granting of planning permission by public bodies, it would, they believe, be appropriate for a proportion of the uplift to be reinvested in public services and shared with local communities. This could most effectively be achieved by changes to the current taxation regime, with the resulting increase in public revenue allowing local authorities to make a greater financial contribution to community projects for the benefit of all residents.
Wales’ two farming unions have launched a joint principles paper aimed at placing Welsh food, farming, livelihoods, communities and our environment on a firm post-Brexit footing.
The paper, entitled ‘A Welsh way forward’, was revealed by Farmers’ Union of Wales President Glyn Roberts and NFU Cymru President John Davies at a briefing session for Assembly Members and Welsh Government staff on Wednesday, October 24, at the Pierhead Building in Cardiff. The event was kindly sponsored by Paul Davies AM.
The publication comes in response to the Welsh Government’s current consultation on future rural and land management policies – entitled ‘Brexit and our land’.
Since the consultation was launched, both Unions have held meetings throughout Wales, engaging with thousands of farming businesses, as well as those from a wide range of allied industries such as agricultural merchants and contractors, auctioneers, vets, processors, accountants and financial advisers.
Based on their respective consultation engagement programmes, the Unions have gained an unrivalled mandate to speak on behalf of rural Wales.
Roger Parry & Partners are encouraging Welsh farmers to apply for the new loan facility which has been set up by the Welsh Government to help farmers who may not receive their Basic Payment Scheme (BPS) 2018 payment when the payment window opens on Saturday, 1 December 2018.
The BPS Loan application is available for BPS customers whose claim will not be fully processed by the opening of the BPS payment window (1 December). If you have submitted an application for BPS 2018 via the Single Application Form (SAF) 2018 then Roger Parry and Partners is encouraging you to consider applying for a loan.
Richard Corbett, Partner with Roger Parry & Partners said, “We are totally aware of how challenging it has been to farm in the weather conditions thrust upon us this year. The Cabinet Secretary for Energy, Planning and Rural Affairs, Lesley Griffiths, set up this loan scheme to offer extra support for the farming industry following the exceptionally hot and dry weather during the summer – that was before the recent floods! We want to make farmers aware that this is an opt in scheme which means you MUST apply for a loan by 30 November 2018 if you wish to receive a loan payment in the event your BPS 2018 claim has not been fully processed. There will be no further opportunity to apply for a BPS loan after the 30 November.”
As of July 2018, the GB milking herd is down 23,000 head (1.3%) on the year according to BCMS data. The herd has shrunk by 3.4% since the beginning of 2016, initially as a result of the extended period of negative margins following the crash in the dairy markets in 2015.
Virtually all of the reduction in the herd occurred within the 4-6 years age category, which fell 4.1% to a 5-year low of 518 thousand head.
OCTOBER 2018 - LEGAL UPDATE
Holiday Pay for Overtime
The current legal position in respect of holiday pay calculations in respect of overtime is as follows:
There are two types of apprenticeship: