The ban on burning plastic on farms comes into force in just nine days’ time.
The rule, which takes effect from January 1, brings Scotland in line with the rest of the UK which has had an overall ban of burning plastics on farms for several years.
The disposal of silage wrap, crop covers, fertiliser bags and containers will have to be undertaken by specialist recycling operators, and following months of engagement between the Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA) and the farmers’ union NFU Scotland (NFUS), a list of contractors has been drawn up to help farmers comply.
Specialists include: Pat Munro Waste Management Services in Alness; the Binn Group at Glenfarg; Farm Waste Recycling – Peter Allison AgriServices at Muir of Pert, Tealing, near Dundee; Tayforth Machinery Ring, Glenfarg; and Wyllie Recycling Ltd at Inveralmond, Perth.
If a land manager carries their own waste off site to another site for onward recycling or disposal, they need to register with SEPA as a Professional Collector and Transporter of Waste (PCT) and if a land manager carries any plastic waste other than their own, even if it is from another land manager, then they must be a Registered Waste Carrier (RWC). Information on how to register is on the SEPA website.
NFUS president Andrew McCornick pointed out the change involved unwelcome expense and inconvenience.
He said: “Any member who is unsure about how to find or contact the relevant contractors for legally disposing of farm plastics can find comprehensive guidance on our website. Alternatively, they are encouraged to contact their regional manager or NFUS head office for advice.”