Truss launches Food Enterprize Zones to make life easier for growers

Food Enterprise Zones (FEZs) which "will unlock the potential" of growers have been launched by the Government today.

Image: Morguefile
Image: Morguefile

The new zones will free up food and farming businesses, making it simpler and easier for them to grow, and will attract new businesses, the Government says.

People in a FEZ will be able to decide what kinds of businesses should be in their FEZ and where it should be located, developing those areas that their region excels in.

The Government says they will make the planning process simpler and easier for food and farming businesses that want to expand.

FEZs will also allow more local decision making on planning and development issues involving food and farming businesses.

Environment Secretary Elizabeth Truss said: "Food Enterprise Zones will help unlock the potential of local food and farming businesses, boosting local economies and attracting more investment.

"Consumers both here and abroad want to buy Great British food. These zones will ensure we can grow more top quality produce and expand our food industry, which is worth more than £100 billion a year to the UK economy – more than cars and aerospace combined.

"Food and farming is at the heart of our long-term economic plan and vital to securing Britain’s economic future."

In the South Downs, the funding will help enable new dairy production on existing dairy farms by re-using redundant farm buildings and brownfield sites within the National Park. It will also allow for more farm shops to be set up allowing direct sale to consumers.

Grants of up to £50,000 will be available to set up FEZs, which will be based around Local Development Orders.

There are eleven proposed Food Enterprise Zones in:

  • Somerset
  • South Downs
  • Cornwall
  • Cumbria
  • Lincolnshire (3 FEZs)
  • Worcestershire
  • Leicestershire
  • Cheshire
  • West Sussex

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