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23  July

Big push to grow and eat Powys fruit and veg

12/06/2024 @ 10:07


Powys County Council has issued new planning guidance to encourage more people to grow and sell fruit and veg from their homes or small holdings, after highlighting the amount of imported produce.

The move, they say, will make it easier to set up market gardens with the advice covering the need to have a home nearby when running a small-scale horticultural business in the Powys Local Planning Authority area (all parts of the county outside of Bannau Brycheiniog National Park).

It should make it easier to get planning permission from Powys County Council for a house in the open countryside when a grower needs it to be close to their crops - Rural enterprise dwellings for small-scale horticulture – planning guidance.

“The evidence suggests that small-scale horticulture can be both highly productive and profitable,” said Matt Perry, Powys County Council’s Chief Officer – Place. “But despite this a large proportion of the vegetables and fruit we eat every day aren’t grown in Powys or even in the UK.

“There is great potential for much more of the food we buy to be grown closer to home, boosting the Powys economy, providing a more predictable supply of fresh and nutritious produce and reducing our carbon footprints as we look to address the climate crisis.”

A new UK Food Security Index commissioned by DEFRA (Department for Environment Food and Rural Affairs) shows that just 55% of the vegetables and only 17% of the fruit we consume is grown in the UK.

Commercial vegetable and fruit growers in Powys may be able to access financial support for their investment plans through the Welsh Government’s Food Business Accelerator Scheme.