Super-sized dairy farm plans put on hold

| 13th April 2010
Cow being milked

Opponents expressed concerns about the welfare of cows being kept indoors and over-worked

The company behind plans for an 8,100-cow dairy farm in Lincolnshire has withdrawn its planning application but insists the project has not been scrapped

Plans for the UK's largest dairy farm in Lincolnshire have been put on hold after the local council raised concerns about the environmental impact of the project.

Nocton Dairies Ltd said it had been asked for more information about slurry management and smell at the site and had now decided to 'take more time' to address the issues.

Opponents of the scheme had also expressed concerns about animal welfare, the spread of disease and the effect on smaller scale dairy farmers.

However, in a statement the company said the opposition would not stop it re-submitting its plans.
'We will be seeking to undertake more surveys and detailed reports with a view towards resubmitting a new planning application in the near future,' said a company statement. 

The farming industry in general has been mixed in its support for the proposal, with the Royal Association of British Dairy Farmers (RABDF) saying the industry needed a proper debate on whether this was the direction it wanted to take in the future.

Nocton Dairies said its plans represented an 'economically viable, environmentally sustainable and ethically imperative future for the British dairy industry'.

'We know this by going back to first principles – we will simply do whatever is best for the cows,' the company said.

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