The application of manure as fertiliser to fields is a common agricultural practice. However, to preserve the biodiversity of meadows and protect soil and groundwater, it is important to apply only suitable amounts. Too large concentrations are harmful to the ecosystem and also to people. Storing large piles directly on the ground is illegal.  Especially in the vicinity of watercourses or sensitive areas (e.g. high groundwater table), there is a risk that the manure will pollute the water, kill freshwater animals and that pathogens and pollutants will make the water undrinkable.

The law states that only smallholders can spread their manure on their fields, far away from watercourses and in small quantities. It is also forbidden to spread slurry on fields during the winter closure period (in Nocrich, for example, between 10 November and 20 March), as this increases the risk of slurry contamination entering water sources.

The example below shows the improper storage of manure: large quantities of manure from a large farm, stored on empty land near a watercourse and during the closed period.

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