FARMERS have expressed frustration with a charity after it claimed poultry farming was harming rivers.

Member of the National Farmers Union have issues concerns to the Wye and Usk Foundation environmental charity after it generated what farmers have called 'harmful publicity', claiming the impact of local poultry farming was harming rivers in the region.

READ MORE: Chicken manure 'disaster' warning as river Wye turns green

Since the Wye and Usk Foundation issued a press release headlined ‘Nation’s ‘favourite’ river facing ecological disaster’, a number of articles in the national press have followed, pinpointing poultry farms in mid Wales as the principal reason for an increase in phosphates in the River Wye, contributing to an increase in algal blooms.

Natural Resources Wales (NRW) has subsequently stated the recent algal blooms came at a time when river levels were close to lowest recorded levels and following the sunniest May on record in the UK and its effect on warm water temperatures – all factors which contribute to the development of algal blooms in rivers.


NRW also stated that long term phosphate levels in the Wye catchment have been declining.

An NFU spokesman said: "The poor portrayal of the industry in recent weeks, all of which has all stemmed from the Wye and Usk Foundation statement, has left farmers feeling scarred and hurt that an organisation with whom they have worked in partnership for many years on fencing off watercourses and other measures to enhance water quality, could issue such a reckless and damaging statement."