Plans for a new broiler unit in Shropshire capable of holding 150,000 chickens have now been passed.

Meadowland Poultry near Wem has been told by Shropshire County Council that it can go ahead with the development.

The new unit, divided into three large sheds each capable of holding 50,000 chickens, will be capable of producing 2,300t of chicken a year. The unit will be able to operate seven cycles a year.

Peter Richards, from Peter Richards Property Consultants, acting as agents for Meadowland Poultry, commented: “There is a national shortage of poultry in the UK. At the present time Meadowland Poultry do not have a processor lined up, but there are a number interested.

“The intention is to employ a full-time manager who will reside on site, the remainder of the labour provision will be a combination of part-time and casual labour at peak times.

“In addition to the direct labour, the development will also support local businesses in the agricultural services industry.”

A number of residents’ groups had objected, expressing concern over environmental issues and increased truck movements, but these were rejected by the council.

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