A FARMER has promised to "never again" plant potatoes or maize in a Herefordshire field after receiving a formal warning over silt deposits.

A meeting of Much Birch Parish Council heard in January that a tenant farmer had received a formal caution over the issue.

Ward Councillor Toni Fagan told the meeting that she "had it in writing" that a farmer renting land off Wrigglebrook Pitch in the village will "never again" plant potatoes or maize in the field after he received the caution over silt deposits resulting from use of the land.

The councillor said the owner of the land has also been informed that, should further deposits occur, they would be "knowingly permitting the pollution of controlled waters and may be liable for allowing their tenant to create this situation."


Minutes from the meeting revealed that the farmer has conceded to revert to 'min-till combinable crops' and greatly increase buffer strips.

The Department for Environment, Food, and Rural Affairs says min-till farming reduces the disturbing of the soil, by using shallower cultivations, only to a depth of 15cm, not turning over the soil, limiting the number of cultivation passes, and using lighter cultivation methods such as tines, cultivators or light discs.

"I am confident this will vastly improve the situation," Coun Fagan said.

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