Farmers are being reminded by the Department of Agriculture that the extended closing dates are approaching for confirmation of their 2023 dairy cow excretion rate bands and for any nitrates derogation applications. The extended deadlines are:

  • 2023 dairy cow excretion rate band confirmation is 31 March 2023.
  • 2023 nitrates derogation applications is noon on 14 April 2023.
  • The banding portal on the Irish Cattle Breeding Federation (ICBF) website is open to all dairy farmers.

    “Provided the farmer has given permission for their co-op to share their milk purchaser data with [the] ICBF, they can identify and confirm their associated dairy band for 2023 quickly and easily,” the Department said.

    “So far, almost 12,000 farmers have availed of the ICBF portal to confirm their band.

    "Almost three quarters of these farmers are in the middle band, resulting in a marginal increase in their cows' nutrient excretion rate compared to last year.

    “For the small cohort of farmers who have not consented to their data being shared with [the] ICBF, they are reminded to complete and submit the paper form, along with copies of their milk statements, which must be sent to the Department to calculate and confirm their dairy cow excretion rate band.”

    This form is available to download from the Department’s website (

    Farmers who applied for a nitrates derogation in 2022 are also reminded that they must submit 2022 fertiliser accounts by the revised closing date of 14 April 2023.