North Yorkshire farms to be protected by advanced forensic marking technology

Valuable property such as trailers, quad bikes and GPS systems on the region’s farms will be marked with an invisible solution that will deter criminals, and help police recover stolen property.

Distributed by North Yorkshire Police’s Rural Task Force, the force claims the SelectaDNA kits will play a key role in the fight against crime in rural areas.

A maximum of five kits are available for each farm, while stocks last.

The marking solution will last at least five years outdoors, and, when analysed, reveals a unique code that irrefutably links property with its rightful owner.

Police will also distribute signs warning opportunistic criminals about the presence of SelectaDNA, to be posted prominently in farmyards and on agricultural buildings.

The kits are funded by the Safer Streets Fund – a national programme to reduce and prevent crime using proven, evidence-based interventions.

They have been brought in following an increase in trailer thefts in North Yorkshire.

There were 63 such thefts between February 2022 and 2023 – increasing to 104 thefts between February 2023 and 2024. It appears offenders typically travel in vehicles capable of towing trailers, and cut chains, locks and gates to enter caravan sites, farms and outbuildings.

A stolen trailer that’s been marked with SelectaDNA will be much easier to identify and reunite with its rightful owner.

Some farmers will be provided with kits directly by Rural Task Force officers and staff, particularly those vulnerable to rural crime due to their location or other factors.

Kits will also be shared via local Rural Watch schemes, and available for free at drop-in sessions, including at agricultural retailers.

In the first such session, farmers are invited to Ripon Farm Services at Dallamires Lane, Ripon, between 10am and 2pm on Monday, May 13.

Officers will explain how the system works and help register it.