Broilers Produce Less Ammonia Than Thought

UK - Farmers can reduce red tape as the result of new research by the National Farmers Union (NFU) and British Poultry Council (BPC) on broiler emissions.
calendar icon 30 March 2010
clock icon 3 minute read

How much ammonia does a chicken produce? A new review of research commissioned by the NFU and the British Poultry Council has shown it is about 32 per cent less than previously thought. In a win for the sector this news means that farmers can now take advantage of a new emission envelope for permitted chicken farms developed in partnership with the Environment Agency.

The new emission envelope will protect the environment while reducing red tape and complex paperwork for farmers.

Working with the Environment Agency, the NFU and the BPC have agreed a new stream-lined application process for pollution permits for chicken farms which will enable farmers to increase their flock size with permits taking a matter of weeks rather than months to approve.

NFU Deputy President Meurig Raymond said: "The NFU and BPC have demonstrated that emissions from the industry were less than previously thought so this is a very pragmatic solution by the Environment Agency in response to the particular needs of the chicken sector. The new application process will allow a quick and easy route for producers and processors to respond to changes in the market, essential for saving them valuable time and effort."

BPC chairman Ted Wright said: "Cutting the red tape means chicken processors and producers will have more flexibility within the emission envelope to adjust to the needs of markets while continuing to protect the environment. The new application process is a good example of the benefits of committed partnership working which together we are looking to repeat with the Environment Agency in other areas of regulation."

Martin Bigg, the Environment Agency's Head of Business for Industry Regulation said: "Over the past few months, we have been working very hard to improve our permitting service for this sector. This is an excellent example of what can be achieved when industry and regulators work together with the common aim of improving regulation so it can help businesses."

Producers can use the emission envelope approach when:

  • There has been no odour/noise/dust or fly issues from the farm within the past three years.
  • The permit does not have or has not previously had an ammonia emission reduction improvement condition.
  • The increase in bird numbers is less than 40,000 places in existing sheds
  • The proposal does not involve a change in emission characteristics i.e. extensions to existing sheds, additional sheds, or changes to ventilation.
  • The application does not claim to be commercially confidential or contain information affecting national security.

More information is available on the Environment Agency web site [click here].

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