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Irish farmers can avoid Nitrates Stocking Rate Penalties

Each year a small proportion of Irish farmers lose income by exceeding stocking rate limits in the Nitrates regulations. Farmers can avoid these penalties by taking action during the year. Options include exporting slurry during the year to less intensively stocked farms or renting extra land and submitting the appropriate forms to the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine (DAFM) Another option is monitoring their livestock numbers throughout the year and reducing them where there is a risk of exceeding the limit.

The Department for Agriculture, Food and the Marine 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 (not later than 31st Dec) to the Nitrates section, Johnstown Castle, Wexford .

To help farmers comply with the stocking rate limits the Department provides interim N and P statements informing farmers of their stocking rate from cattle to date. Those farmers that are most likely to exceed the limit based on DAFM data have received a text message outlining their stocking rate to the end of October. Any farmer that is unsure about their position should contact their local agricultural advisor or Nitrates section at 053-9163444.

  1. To register a mobile phone number for future SMS text alerts please log on to to access the sign-on form.
  1. All farmers can view their N & P statements at Farmers not already registered can do so by logging onto and clicking the ‘Register’ button.

If a herdowner does not have access to online or SMS text alert notification services, the interim N&P statements can be obtained from the Department’s Nitrates Section, Johnstown Castle, Wexford at 053-9163444.

To view this Statement as a PDF: Nitrates Statement (pdf 262Kb) 

Date Released: 07 December 2016