The owners of a family-run farm based in Wrexham are looking to expand their business by moving into milk production.
Proposals have been put forward to create a dairy unit at Home Farm in Bettisfield Park, which sits close to the Shropshire border.
Tom and George Hanmer currently use their 395 acres of land near the village of Hanmer for beef and sheep farming.
However, they said the market was declining and have now signalled their intention to enter milk production using around 250 cows after submitting plans to Wrexham Council.
In documents accompanying the application, an agricultural consultant acting on the firm’s behalf said the move was designed to secure the farm’s long term future.
Will Phillips, director of P&L Agriconsulting, said: “The business is prepared to invest in a modern dairy set up, including a milking parlour and all associated facilities to secure a more resilient and sustainable future.
“This will not only put the business on a sounder financial footing, but it will also provide additional employment.
“It is anticipated that at least two, and possibly three, new full-time jobs and one part-time job will be created.
“The proposed system will be based on a sustainable farming module aiming to produce milk from grass and home-grown forages.”
Mr Phillips said there had been a decline in red meat consumption across the UK, which prompted a review of the company’s business model.
The family previously considered extending the existing buildings at Home Farm but chose to create new structures at nearby Merehead to reduce the distance the cows will need to walk from their grazing land.
The proposed new buildings include a milking parlour, slurry and dirty water lagoon, a silage storage area and feed pad.
According to the plans, the dairy unit would be accessed from the existing farm road.
The proposals will be considered by the local authority at a later date.
*Picture: Planning documents
By Liam Randall – BBC Local Democracy Reporter (more here on the LDR scheme).
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