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Responsible for the service Regional State Administrative Agency

Outdoor cattle grazing

  • Permit or other obligation
  • Nationwide except the Åland Islands
  • Public service

Outdoor cattle grazing

Dairy cows that are usually housed tethered in tie-stall barns must be allowed access to an outdoor exercise yard or pasture in the summer. The requirement also applies to heifers reared for milk production from the age of eight months onwards.

Advice and guidance

When do cows need to be allowed outdoors?

Cows must be allowed outdoors for at least 60 days betwee ...

Do the following

How can I get exempted?

If you are unable to provide your cattle with an outdoor space for grazing, you can write to your nearest Regional State Administrative Agency and ask for permission to keep your cows indoors in the summer.

There is no application form, so you need to explain your circumstances in your own words.

Make sure that your application includes at least the following information:

  • your name, address and telephone number
  • your farm ID, the address of your farm and your business ID
  • the number of dairy cows and dairy heifers aged at least eight months that you keep tethered on your farm
  • the reason why your dairy cows and heifers cannot be allowed outdoors
  • the layout of your farm
  • a map of any fields and other land on the farm that lie within one kilometre of the barn
  • any other relevant information that could influence the Regional State Administrative Agency’s decision

How do Regional State Administrative Agencies process requests for exemptions?

Requests for exemptions are forwarded to the Regional Veterinary Officer. The applicant may be asked to provide further information.

In some cases, we conduct an inspection on the farm. If an inspection is necessary, we will contact you and arrange a suitable time.

To whom and on what terms

In what circumstances do cows not need to be allowed outdoors in the summer?

Regional State Administrative Agencies can grant special permission to keep cows indoors in the summer if

  • there is no suitable pasture or exercise yard on the farm,
  • providing an outdoor space for grazing would place an unreasonable burden on the farmer, or
  • compliance with the grazing requirement cannot be achieved without unreasonable inconvenience due to the surrounding transport infrastructure, terrain or distances.

Farmers can be exempted from the grazing requirement for a maximum of three years. The competent Regional State Administrative Agency can withdraw the exemption if circumstances on the farm change.

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Regional State Administrative Agency

Responsible for the service

Regional State Administrative Agency
Text edited by: Regional State Administrative Agency
Updated: 12/12/2020