Good farming practice

Advice on ways to help you protect the environment and comply with environmental legislation

The Code of Good Agricultural Practice (Welsh Government) is a practical guide to help farmers and land managers protect the environment in which they work. 

Agricultural waste

Agricultural waste is any substance or object from premises used for agriculture or horticulture, which the holder discards, intends to discard or is required to discard. It is waste specifically generated by agricultural activities.

Flood risk

As a farm, your land may be at risk of flooding even if your house is not. There are lots of small, simple steps you can take to both prepare your farm for flooding and reduce the impact of a flood on your farm.

If you own land or property alongside a river or other watercourse, including a culvert, make sure you know your rights and responsibilities for managing water.

Guidance on using sheep dip

You must register an exemption / apply for an environmental permit if you want to dispose of any used dip to land, even for small quantities.

Intensive farming (pigs and poultry)

If you farm pigs and poultry on a large scale, you may need an environmental permit.

Managing trees on your land

It is an offence to fell trees without a licence if an exemption does not apply.

Septic tanks and sewage treatment system

If your farm has a septic tank then there is a legal requirement to register with us. If your farm has a private sewage treatment system or makes any other discharges to water, you may need an environmental permit.

Protecting landscapes

If you manage land within a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI), you must manage it in a way that helps conserve its special wildlife and geological features.

Protecting wildlife

Some plants and animals, including their breeding sites and resting places, are protected against disturbance and harm.

Storing slurry and silage

Slurry and silage effluent is a strong pollutant that removes oxygen from the water, killing fish and water insects. Fuel oil can also have a damaging effect on birds and other river life. 

If you need advice or guidance, please contact us or, if you are concerned about pollution report it to us on our environmental hotline.

New, reconstructed, or enlarged structures for storage of silage or slurry

You must tell us at least 14 days before you start to use a facility, but we encourage you to do this earlier and preferably at the design stage to prevent possible costly errors.

Tell us about a new, reconstructed, or enlarged facility that you intend to use for storing silage, slurry.

If the facility includes a silage effluent tank that is partially or completely below ground, you must ask the person who built or designed the tank to sign the certificate in section 5 of the form.

For more information, contact us on 0300 065 3000
or email:

Water abstraction

If you are planning to take water from the ground or from surface water you may need to get a licence from us.

Working in or near rivers

If you are planning to do any work in or near a watercourse, you may need to apply for various permissions before you start.

Blue green algae

Blue-green algae naturally occur in inland waters, estuaries and the sea. Blooms can form when their numbers become excessive. Our blue green algae leaflet describes characteristic features of blue-green algal blooms, how they affect you and what you should do if you see one.