The British Poultry Council (BPC) has called for a moratorium on IPPC charges until the results of an urgent review have been undertaken.
The call follows an announcement by Lord Rooker at the BPC's Annual Awards this week, where the Government's decision to urgently review Environment Agency charges for new Integrated Pollution Prevention and Control permits for pig and poultry farms was revealed.
Speaking at the awards ceremony in the House of Commons, Lord Rooker (pictured) said a "robust examination is needed to deliver effective and cost efficient arrangements for IPPC permitting and compliance monitoring". Adding that the review should also explore the issue of lack of transparency in the Agency's fees and charges.
Addressing an audience of politicians, research scientists, and poultry farmers Ted Wright BPC chairman said that more use could be made of the assurance schemes, such as Assured Chicken Production and Quality British Turkey, to meet some of the official on-farm requirements of DEFRA and the Environment Agency. Wright then pointed out that the immediate problem facing poultry farmers was the £4million in total IPPC Application Fees, which they have to pay the Agency within the next four weeks.
Commenting on the announcement Wright added it was 'good news' that the role of assurance schemes and the permitting charges would be examined in the urgent review. BPC said it was pleased that the Council's joint lobbying with other poultry bodies, had succeeded in the acknowledgement by Defra Ministers that a better way had to be found.
BPC is now ready to work closely with the other poultry and pig sector bodies, and with Richard MacDonald, director-general of the National Farmers Union who is facilitating the review.