Edinburgh, Fife & East Scotland

Council to act over 'putrid' farm smell

Fife Council has said it is considering taking legal action after a "putrid" smell was caused by a farmer spreading waste fertiliser on his land.

The local authority launched an investigation after a large number of complaints from residents near the Muir Dean site, near Dunfermline.

The farmer had been using a fertiliser called limed distillery waste.

However, the waste should not be used in certain conditions, such as high temperatures.

The farmer, who spent two days on Wednesday and Thursday covering his fields in 1,000 tonnes of the fertiliser, has been told by the council to stop.

Sepa has also been involved in the investigation.

The council has been assured by the landowner there is currently no plans to spread any further material at the site.

The waste is a by-product of the distilling process and is not animal or human waste.

Bill Alexander, 72, from the Masterton area of Dunfermline, said the smell had travelled a great distance.

'Disgusting smell'

He told the BBC Scotland news website: "I am absolutely furious. The smell is absolutely disgusting and we had to sleep with our windows closed last night.

"My wife can't put the washing out as the smell will stick to the clothes and it was unbearable when I took my granddaughter to school this morning.

"I only have one lung and I've also been worried about what I'm breathing in and if it's going to affect my breathing.

"Everyone is talking about it because it is so putrid and it's been like this since Wednesday."

Don Taylor, Fife Council's lead officer for public protection, said the farmer had breached an agricultural code of conduct.

He said: "The waste is very odorous and this has been further heightened by the hot weather and the wind blowing directly towards a large area of housing.

"Generally odours of this nature dissipate over a day or two."

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