Farmers to get €600,000 to deal with growing manure and slurry problem

Farmers will get financial support to deal with the organic waste being generated by animals and slurry in farms

Farmers will help to devise solutions for the removal of animal manure and slurry
Farmers will help to devise solutions for the removal of animal manure and slurry

A €600,000 fund will asset farmers manage livestock manure and slurry, to encourage projects that would benefit the environment, farmers and investors.

A memorandum of understanding was signed Wednesday morning between the Department of Agriculture within the Environment Ministry and the Malta Council for Science and Technology, which will see the setting up of the €600,000 fund for a holistic approach to the sustainable management of manure and slurry.

Environment minister Jose Herrera said that the agreement would lead to innovative solutions that would be economically and technologically advantageous to operators. “The aim is to find a sustainable solution that will help farmers deal with the waste,” he said. “We understand such systems do not come cheap and that is why we hope there will be multiple projects benefiting from this fund.”

Read also: Malta's unlikely eco-warriors

Pariamentary secretary for financial services and innovation Silvio Schembri said that immediate action was needed to curb the current levels of nitrates generated by the organic waste and slurry in farms. “This is a challenge to which the government is committed to finding a solution,” he said. “This fund will help identify processes that benefit the environment, the farmer and investors.”

Jeffrey Pullicino Orlando, chairman of the MCST, which will be administering the fund and vetting proposals, said he was amazed that such an initiative had not been launched before, due to large amount of waste generated. All applications for funding must be approved by October. 

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