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The Set-Aside Regulations 1988

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Regulation 2(1)


List AList B
Common wheatPotatoes
Durum wheatForage roots and tubers
Grain maizeLupins
MilletFodder kale
Canary seedFodder rape
TriticaleFodder maize
Fresh vegetables
Peas and beans harvested in dried form for human or animal consumption
Sugar beet
Oilseed rape
Castor seed
Sunflower seed

Regulations 7(1), 8(1) and 9(1)


Establishment and retention of plant cover

1.  The beneficiary shall establish a plant cover immediately after the commencement of the set-aside period. If the crop planted in the year prior to the commencement of the set-aside period has not yet been harvested, the plant cover shall be established immediately after the harvest. If the beneficiary is prevented from establishing a plant cover by exceptional weather conditions, he shall do so as soon as practicable. The establishment of a plant cover may take the form of the regeneration of naturally-occurring vegetation.

2.  The beneficiary shall retain the plant cover throughout the period in which the requirements in this Schedule apply to the land.

3.  Notwithstanding the requirement in paragraph 2 above, the beneficiary may destroy the plant cover by cultivation where this is necessary—

(a)in order to prepare for the production of a crop, provided that the destruction of the plant cover does not take place before 1st August preceding the establishment of that crop; or

(b)in order to control the spread of weeds, provided that where plant cover is destroyed for this purpose it shall be re-established as soon as practicable thereafter; or

(c)in order to prepare for the establishment of an alternative plant cover, provided that that alternative cover is established as soon as practicable after the destruction of the previous cover.

4.  The beneficiary shall cut the plant cover at least once in every year following the commencement of the set-aside period. The beneficiary shall not sell cuttings or use them for feeding livestock.

5.  Notwithstanding the requirement in paragraph 4 above, the appropriate Minister may authorise a beneficiary not to cut plant cover on any land to which the requirements in this Schedule apply where that beneficiary has submitted to that Minister written proposals for the creation or maintenance of a wildlife habitat on that land.

Use of fertilisers and waste materials

6.  The beneficiary shall not apply any inorganic fertiliser which contains nitrogen at any time between the end of the previous harvest and the establishment of a subsequent crop.

7.  The beneficiary shall not apply any inorganic fertiliser which does not contain nitrogen (other than lime) before 1st August in the year in which a crop is to be established.

8.  The beneficiary shall not apply any organic fertiliser at any time between the end of the previous harvest and the establishment of a subsequent crop. The appropriate Minister may authorise a beneficiary to apply slurry or manure where that Minister is satisfied that the application is necessary in order to prevent soil erosion.

9.  The beneficiary shall not use the land as a dumping ground for any type of organic or inorganic material.

Use of pesticides

10.  The beneficiary shall not apply pesticides.

11.  Notwithstanding the requirement in paragraph 10 above, the appropriate Minister may authorise a beneficiary to apply herbicides provided that any herbicide used is of a type which is absorbed into the plant primarily through the leaves and the stem and which has little or no persistence in water and in the soil.

12.  The beneficiary shall make a written record of the type, quantity, date and method of application of any herbicide used and of the reason for such use and shall keep the written record for the duration of the set-aside period.

Maintenance of environmental features

13.  The beneficiary shall maintain—

(a)all existing hedges and rows of trees (including hedgerow trees), and

(b)all existing lakes, lochs, watercourses, ponds and pools,

which he is entitled to maintain and which are situated on or adjacent to any land to which the requirements in this Schedule apply.

Land improvement works

14.  The beneficiary shall not install any new drainage system, nor substantially modify any existing drainage system.

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