Government supervision and (environmental) permits

In order to operate a (farming) business, various permits and authorisations are usually required. Examples include:

  • An environmental permit for keeping livestock (currently referred to as an environmental permit for an establishment);
  • A building permit for the construction of stables or sheds (currently referred to as an environmental permit for construction);
  • An environmental notification for changing the business;
  • An ecological permit due to the emission of nitrogen.

The government ensures that the required permits and authorisations are obtained and that the applicable legislation is complied with. Examples include the Netherlands Food and Consumer Product Safety Authority (NVWA), which oversees compliance with food safety legislation, or the municipal executive, which ensures that people do not act contrary to the local zoning plan.

If a government body finds that certain rules are being violated, it will proceed to enforce them. In order to ensure that a violation is stopped, the authority can, for instance, impose an administrative enforcement order or incremental penalty order.

An administrative enforcement order means that a certain period of time is granted in order to end the violation. If someone does not do so within the set period, the government will end the violation itself. The costs can then be recovered from the offender.

An incremental penalty order also sets a deadline for ending the violation. If this is not done within the stipulated period, a penalty payment will be forfeited for each specific period that the breach continues.

What can we do for you?

The Food & Agri Team can help you assess which permits and authorisations your business needs, which rules apply to your business or assist you in a possible enforcement process.