Little Red Tractor Is Going Greener

Article excerpt

Byline: DAVID McCOY

THE little red tractor logo in England and Wales is about to get a boost to its green credentials with a new initiative, launched this week, to develop further the environmental standards of farm assurance schemes.

The initiative is being spearheaded by Assured Food Standards, the independent body that licenses the British Farm Standard logo.

It aims to improve environmental protection while taking account the heavy regulatory pressures already on the farming community.

Research will be undertaken by Land Use Consultants of Bristol (LUC), funded jointly by AFS, Department of Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, the Environment Agency, the Countryside Agency and English Nature, to look at how the logo's current green standards can be built on to meet the needs of environmental protection in differing sectors of agriculture.

The project will build on previous studies of environmental conditions in assurance schemes and will aim to:

l Identify environmental gaps in existing scheme standards through consultation with a wide range of stakeholders.

l Develop with scheme owners and others a set of agreed objectives which can then be translated into baseline standards for each of the three following sectors: crop production, intensive livestock and grazing livestock.

l Work with scheme owners and operators to identify a timetable and process for incorporating the results of the study into assurance schemes and identify the guidance and support which will be needed by scheme members to ensure effective implementation. …