HC Deb 15 July 1993 vol 228 c592W
Mr. Deva

To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment what is the Government's planning policy for farm-based fruit and vegetable packing operations.

Mr. Curry

Farm-based fruit and vegetable packing operations, including those packing the produce of other farms, can help bring necessary diversification to the rural economy and assist our farmers in competing effectively at home and abroad. The Government attach great importance to encouraging new sources of jobs and services in rural areas, and maintaining a strong agricultural and horticultural industry. Planning policy guidance note 7 advises that development which is necessary to sustain the rural economy should be properly integrated with the protection of the rural environment. Unless material considerations indicate otherwise, applications for farm-based packing operations must be determined in accordance with the development plan.