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  1. I live in a rented house in rural Scotland and my girlfriend lives in a rented house just short of a mile away. She has an eight acre field attached to her house in which she keeps her horses. When I mentioned in passing that lamb was my favourite meat, I playfully suggested keeping a few sheep and, although she is a vegetarian, said she thought it would be a good idea. She has worked with horses for almost 40 years and says that they are good companions and one of her horses particularly likes having sheep around. There are sheep and cattle in nearby but not adjacent fields and poultry in a run in the same field. The question is, what are the laws and regulations about keeping livestock for one's own consumption? I know that EU rules have nailed down virtually all traditional farming methods.
  2. CAP review post 2013. Is it a radical shake up or just more of the same?? Well, it looks like more of the same, but with some difficult changes for UK farmers. Read the review here from Smiths-Gore. http://www.smithsgore.co.uk/assets/x/2695023 with thanks to SG Landscope
  3. This RDPE-funded scheme, operated by Natural England, offers farmers in 50 priority catchments in England up to £10,000 for a range of improvements to reduce diffuse pollution, including fencing near rivers, installing water troughs, and roofing manure and silage stores. The grants are competitive and around £7.5m is available this year (so around 750 -1,000 schemes approved). The application window closes 30 April 2011. Background In January 2010, AEA was commissioned by Defra to carry out a review of current agricultural advice and to draw from that analysis recommendations for a low carbon advisory service. These recommendations form part of an ongoing process to shape support for famers to help reduce greenhouse gas emissions from the farming sector. The UK Low Carbon Transition Plan sets an abatement target of 3MtCO2 per year. An industry-led consortium set out plans for how this target might be met in the Agricultural Industry Greenhouse Gas Action Plan, which is also supported by Defra’s Climate Change Plan. Both make reference to the need for additional advice for farmers to help in achieving the abatement target. Approach The project involved a comprehensive survey of agricultural advice, taking into account published and grey literature through a desk survey. The project evaluated the existing provision of advisory services to the agriculture sector/farmers. This included an assessment of three current models of advice provision namely; • Cross Compliance Advice Programme; • England Catchment Sensitive Farming Delivery Initiative; • Industry Led Initiative - Pesticide Voluntary Initiative. Each was assessed on its monitoring and effectiveness in achieving environmental outcomes. Advisory services from across the agriculture sector were also approached, through an online questionnaire and targeted telephone interviews. This built a view of the current advisory ‘landscape’ and enabled the project team to benefit from the experience and expertise of advisers within the sector.
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