EU money gives Cornish food a welcome boost
EUROPEAN money is helping to boost the Cornish dairy and food processing industries.
Two new projects will benefit from Objective 1 funding, available to economically challenged regions where incomes are 75% below the EU average.
One of the beneficiaries is a home-grown cheese project which aims to capitalise on the demand for locally produced, traditional Cornish brands.
A dairy is to be built at Pengeep Farm, near Truro, where owners Ben and Catherine Mead aim to manufacture 300t/year of Cornish Yarg cheese, a distinctive product that is hand-made and wrapped in nettle leaves.
The scheme, which will create up to 14 jobs, will use about 3m litres of milk from the farm and co-op Milk Link. The brand was developed over many years by Michael Horrells Lynher Farms and Dairies in east Cornwall. A new company, Lynher Valley Cheese, has been formed to market the cheese from both Yarg producers.
Most funds will be met by the farm, but 40% of the total £778,000 needed came via Objective 1.
The second scheme is a feasibility study for a proposed food and energy park near Scorrier. Business Location Services, which is behind the development, says the 34-acre brownfield site could become a centre of excellence for the Cornish food industry.
The firms Russell Dodge says the planned £30m park could provide premises for up to 30 small businesses. The feasibility study will cost about £97,500, about a quarter of which will come from the Objective 1 programme. *