Department to consider derogation requests for fallow land from GLAS farmers

The Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine is now accepting applications from farmers in GLAS with fallow land for a derogation to utilise this ground for fodder.

Announcing the move today (Tuesday, July 24), Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Michael Creed said that the option applies to farmers in the Green, Low-Carbon, Agri-Environment Scheme (GLAS) implementing the fallow land option for bird cover.

The minister said: “The objective of the GLAS action – Environmental Management of Fallow Land – is to provide food and habitat for ground nesting birds, other fauna and insects throughout the nesting season by establishing a fallow area.

“Under the scheme specifications, parcels must be mulched or mown at least once a year – but not between March 1 and September 1 annually.

Given the difficulties farmers are experiencing this year, on an exceptional basis, my department is prepared to consider written requests for a derogation from the specifications for this action.

Continuing, the minister said: “Written requests will be considered on a case-by-case basis. A visit to the land affected may be required before approval is granted.

“Individual requests for a derogation from the GLAS specifications should be submitted in writing to GLAS Division, Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Johnstown Castle Estate, Co. Wexford or to: [email protected]

Yesterday it was revealed by AgriLand that a request to allow this was formally made to the European Commission, asking for “the relaxing of a number of conditions” that could potentially make large swathes of land accessible in order to deal with acute concerns regarding fodder reserves.