Branston (Potatoes) Ltd, based near Lincoln, has submitted a planning application with North Kesteven District Council for an expansion which would create 19 new jobs.
The extension to an existing building on site would create a new potato peeling facility, which will provide additional capacity and specific production requirements.
The company said the need for a new extension has been building since January 2005 when Branston started supplying Tesco with value added prepared potato products.
Should the planning application be granted, the new facility will provide peeling lines, finished load assembly areas and a storage mezzanine as well as 19 new full time jobs on top of the existing 293 staff already on site – increasing the size of the existing building by 3,712m sq.
In addition to the building extension, yard areas to the north and south of the building would be extended accordingly and the existing external internal access roadway will be replaced by a new roadway located further east.
Trundley Design Services, submitting the application on behalf of Branston, stated: “Part of this development is to carry out additional potato peeling operations on site in order to add value to second grade crops.
“The fresh potato packing operation adjacent to the prepared facility already sends out the majority of the second grade material in the form of boxed products for markets or in bulk for further processing by others.
“In this scheme it is proposed that the prepared site takes the majority of this material and peels it on site for distribution to retail and ready meal producing customers.”
The report notes contributions that Branston has made to the local economy. It says: “The economic importance of this site is of major significance particularly considering that much of its expenditure is concentrated in the Lincoln region.
“The value to local potato producers runs into millions of pounds and is all the more remarkable considering the difficult period UK agriculture has experienced over the past decade.
“The company invests not only in its own highly skilled staff but also endeavours to support many local service providers.”
The application will be considered by North Kesteven District Council’s planning committee at a date to be confirmed at a later date.