Cross Compliance Rules

Cross Compliance rules are a set of rules that need to be met by the individual farmers in United Kingdom in order to become eligible for getting direct benefits through rural payments agency. Cross compliance rules would apply to those individuals residing in United Kingdom receiving direct payments under Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) or to those who are receiving payments under the rural development programme for England (RDPE).
Main Regulations of the Cross compliance rules

There are three important regulations, which form the crux of the cross compliance rule.

1. Statutory management requirements (SMR) applicable across the European Union countries. The different area that are covered under the statutory requirements include public health, animal and plant health and environmental health

2.Standards that have been created based on the European legal framework, which requires the land owner to maintain the land in good agricultural and Environmental conditions (GAEC). The quality of soil structure and soil organic required to maintain the habitat and the water levels is covered under the standards

3.Agreeing to maintain a permanent pasture land area that is not part of the crop rotation. The member states in the European union have to ensure that the ratio of the permanent pasture to the total agricultural land should be maintained within the permissible limits. When the ratio falls below the allowed limits due to the pasture land area shrinkage, the member states have to instruct their farmers not to convert any more pasture land in to agricultural land without getting prior authorization

Statutory Management Requirements (SMRs)

As part of the cross compliance rules, there are 18 statutory management requirements that needs to be adhered to by the individual farmers. This includes wild birds, sewage sludge, ground water, habitats and species, Nitrate Vulnerable zones, pig identification and registration, cattle identification and registration, sheep and goats identification, restriction on the use of plant protection products, restriction on the use of substances having a negative impact on the hormonal balances of the farm animals, welfare of calves and pigs and Animal general welfare.

Good Agricultural and Environmental Conditions (GAEC)

This section consists of 16 major conditions that need to be met by the individual farmers. The conditions include soil protection review, Environment impact Assessment, Scientific interest sites, public rights of way, scheduled monuments, Over grazing of the pasture land, grass burning, control of weeds, Agricultural land that is not doing any agriculture related activities, protection of water courses, Tree felling, Abstraction of water and Tree preservation orders.

Each and every section of the SMR and GAEC has to be complied by the individual farmers in order to continue receiving the scheme benefits. Farmers in United Kingdom are bound by the Cross Compliance rules in addition to the already existing rules under European and UK Legislation.

Schemes that are covered under cross compliance rules

Individual farmers in United Kingdom have to meet the rules specified in cross compliance standards in order to continue receiving payments through the following schemes.

1. Single Payment Schemes
2. Entry level Stewardship schemes including organic entry level stewardship and uplands entry level stewardship
3. Higher level Stewardship
4. Uplands transitional payment
5. Woodland payment under the Woodland management grant scheme