Welsh farmers must follow these rules if they apply for payments under the Basic Payment Scheme 2024. Cross compliance is made up of Statutory Management Rules (SMRs) and Good Agricultural and Environmental Conditions (GAECs).

Statutory Management Requirements (SMRs)

SMR1:     Water Protection – The aim of these requirements is to reduce the pollution of waters from agricultural sources and to prevent such pollution occurring in the future. In 2023, some measures apply to all land in Wales while others only apply to land previously within a Nitrate Vulnerable Zone. You must comply with the Water Resources (Control of Agricultural Pollution) (Wales) Regulations 2021 from 1 April 2021. Transitional periods have been provided for certain requirements, for land not previously falling within a Nitrate Vulnerable Zone. Additional requirements will apply to all land from 1 April 2023 and 1 August 2024, as part of the agreed transition period for land not previously in a Nitrate Vulnerable Zone (NVZ).
SMR2:Wild Birds – The aim of these requirements is to protect wild birds, their eggs and nests. They apply to all wild birds. Extra rules apply if you have land designated as a Special Protection Area (SPA).  
SMR3:Conservation of Fauna and Flora (Biodiversity) – The aim of these requirements is to protect species of flora and fauna. They apply to all claimants. Extra requirements apply if you have land designated as a Special Area of Conservation (SAC). 
SMR4:Food and Feed Law – The aim of these requirements is to ensure the production of food for human consumption and food or feed that is fed to food-producing animals is safe
SMR5: Restrictions on the Use of Substances having Hormonal or Thyrostatic Action and Beta-Agonists in Farm Animals – The aim of these requirements is to stop the illegal use in stock farming of substances that have a hormonal or thyrostatic action and beta-agonists, and to prevent the residues that these substances leave in meat and other foodstuffs from entering the human or animal food chain. They apply to you if you keep farmed animals.
SMR6:Pig Identification and Registration – The aim of these requirements is to reduce the risk of pig diseases spreading through controlling movements and improving traceability. They apply to you if you keep pigs.
SMR7:Cattle Identification and Registration– The aim of these requirements is to establish a system for the identification and registration of cattle to facilitate their traceability, in particular in the event of a disease outbreak. Within this SMR, ‘cattle’ means all bovine animals.
SMR8: Sheep and Goat identification (Sheep and Goat (Records, Identification, Movement (Wales) Order 2015)) – The aim of these requirements is to maintain a system for the identification and registration of sheep and goats in order to facilitate their traceability, in particular in the event of a disease outbreak. They apply to you if you keep sheep and/or goats, even as pets.
SMR9:Animal Diseases – Prevention and control of transmissible spongiform encephalopathies – TSEs – The aim of these requirements is to minimise the risk posed to human and animal health by certain transmissible spongiform encephalopathies (TSEs). They apply to you if you keep farmed animals.
SMR10:Plant Protection Products  – The aim of these requirements is to ensure that plant protection products (PPPs) are used correctly and to minimise their risk to humans, animals and the environment. They apply to you if you use these products on your land.
SMR11:Animal Welfare (Calves)  – The aim of these requirements is to protect the welfare of calves by setting minimum standards for their care and husbandry. If you keep calves, they apply to you in addition to the requirements for the welfare of all farmed animals.
SMR12:Animal Welfare (Pigs)  – The aim of these requirements is to protect the welfare of pigs by setting minimum standards for their care and husbandry. If you keep pigs, they apply to you in addition to the requirements for the welfare of all farmed animals (SMR 13: General Animal Welfare).
SMR13:Animal Welfare (General) – The aim of these requirements is to protect the welfare of farmed animals by setting minimum standards for their care and husbandry. They apply to you if you keep any species for farming purposes.

Good Agricultural and Environmental Conditions (GAECs)

GAEC1:  Water – Establishment of Buffer Strips – The aim of these standards is to protect surface water from pollution by fertilisers and plant protection products (PPP) by creating buffer strips. This requirement applies to all agricultural land in Wales, irrespective of the field/parcel size, and regardless if the land is within or outside a Nitrate Vulnerable Zone.
GAEC2: Water – Use of Water for Irrigation– The aim of these standards is to manage the use of water, through controlling water abstraction used for irrigation by licensed abstraction. An abstraction licence issued by Natural Resources Wales is required if you abstract more than 20m3 from inland water (such as a river or a stream) or an underground source (such as a well or a borehole) for irrigation purposes.
GAEC3: Water – Groundwater – The aim of these standards is to protect groundwater by controlling the discharge of potentially harmful and polluting materials. For the purposes of cross compliance, ‘Groundwater’ means all water below the surface of the ground that is in the saturation zone (that is, below the water table) and in direct contact with the land or subsoil.
GAEC4: Soil and Carbon stock – minimum soil cover – You must protect soil by ensuring that all land is covered by crops, stubbles, residues or other vegetation at all times, except where establishing a cover would conflict with requirements under GAEC 5.
GAEC5:Soil and Carbon Stock – minimum land management site specific conditions to limit erosion – The aim of this requirement is to limit soil erosion by not undertaking certain operations.
GAEC6:Soil and Carbon Stock – maintenance of organic matter – The aim of these standards is to protect the soil. Environmental benefits of maintaining habitats and biodiversity are of national importance.
GAEC7:Maintenance of Landscape Features – The aim of this standard is to protect features such as hedges, stone walls, ditches and ancient monuments.

 View / download the full guide to cross compliance in Wales 2024 here

 
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