UK: Hydroponic- and vertical fruit farm planned for North Yorkshire fields

A unique proposal, combining the modern farming technique of hydroponics with a bespoke holiday chalet development, could see farmers from around the world attending courses to learn about growing crops without soil.

Red Roofs aims to grow wheatgrass, fodder, and microgreens using hydroponics While most proposals to develop greenfield sites generate controversy, just weeks after Red Roofs Lodges’ submitted an application to Hambleton District Council to transform farm fields near Tanton, north of Stokesley, the scheme has received some 35 letters of support and no objections.

Planning papers state 21 bespoke and environmentally-friendly lodges and a vertical fruit farm would be created to support the hydroponics businesses, which has operated at a “scaled-down” level since being granted planning permission in 2009 due to a lack of investment.

The documents state the applicant had investigated all avenues for Government and national funding for this type of farming and aimed through the proposal to kickstart and sustain the hydroponics venture.

They state: “The aim of this new business venture is to be financially self-sufficient and to market this hydroponic set up to other local and national farmers in the UK and across the rest of the world. It will include training courses which would allow visitors to be accommodated on-site if need be.

“It is important to retain this business and provide financial security for this as there are a number of environmental benefits associated with hydroponics which include higher yield production, water conservation, and the removal of pesticides and herbicides."

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