McCain Foods has had its plans for a £100 million expansion of its potato processing facility in Scarborough recommended by the planning committee of Scarborough Borough Council.
The plans for the Eastfield site include upgrades to equipment and renewable energy generation, as well as environmental measures such as odour reduction technology and landscaping. The company, which has been on the site for almost 50 years, says that the expansion will help to secure jobs in the area.
Bill Bartlett, corporate affairs director for McCain, commented, “We are delighted at the outcome of the planning committee’s decision to recommend approval of the renewal plans for our Scarborough site. This will see over GBP100m invested into our Scarborough facility. Established in Eastfield almost 50 years ago, the McCain Foods Scarborough facility is one of the company’s most successful sites. As the largest private employer in Scarborough and partner to many suppliers and community organizations in the area, we are dedicated to our operations here.”
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Valley Grown Nurseries has official opened its latest block of glass following its lengthy legal battle with local planning authorities.
Unveiling the first 9.7 ha of new glass at Nazeing near Harlow, business co-owner of the company Jimmy Russo slammed the behaviour of Lee Valley Regional Park but thanked both the NFU and Lea Valley Growers Association (LVGA) for their support during the process. “This project has no downside,” he claimed, adding: “Hopefully this has set a precedent for all growers regarding planning.”
NFU President Meurig Raymond was one of the guests at the opening and said, “Self-sufficiency in the horticultural industry has fallen for a number of years. We now import four out of every five tomatoes eaten in this country, at a time when the public is actively seeking to buy quality British produce.
“There is tremendous scope to grow more salad crops to meet public demand, but modern agriculture and horticulture require investment in modern buildings and modern facilities. That’s why this new development is so welcome. I’m delighted that the NFU supported Valley Grown Nurseries through the planning process and I hope we will see more schemes like this in the future.”
Lee Stiles, of LVGA added, “We have a great opportunity to grow more local food, reduce food imports and create local jobs through glasshouse expansion in the Lea Valley.”
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Plans for a 92,000 square meter glasshouse in the Lee Valley on greenbelt land at Nazeing near Harlow have been backed by the Court of Appeal.
Valley Grown Salads was granted permission for the expansion at its Paynes Lane site by the local authority in August 2014, but the decision was fought by the Lee Valley Regional Park Authority as, as well as being a green belt site, it said the site was within the Lee Valley Park and less than a mile from the Lee Valley Special Protection Area.
The principal issue in the case concerned the consequences of a proposal being appropriate (or “not inappropriate”) development in the Green Belt. The glasshouse was appropriate, since it was a “building for agriculture” under the first bullet of paragraph 89 of the NPPF. In his decision, Lord Justice Lindblom stressed that new buildings for agriculture and forestry are not viewed as “inappropriate” in the Green Belt.
Photo Credit: Volvo trucks
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