More money off-farm?

19 May 2000

More money off-farm?

More money off-farm?

OFF-FARM activities may yield more money for one east Sussex dairy unit than milking.

That was the grim reality for John Downing, who runs a herd of high yield pedigree black-and-whites at Wintersell Farm, Edenbridge.

"There is much more we can do in terms of building conversions that will make money. Even Prime Minister Blair and local councils think we should do these types of schemes to boost income."

So now, instead of rearing 1000 turkeys for Christmas in old dairy sheds the Downings are turning these over for small business rents.

They recognise that their location near the M25 and London makes it ideal to attract small businesses, such as photographers and fashion retailers.

"We are completely divorcing this side of our business from the agricultural side. There is about 30,000ft sq of rental space here, which is worth £3/ft sq. This is a much better return on investment and makes much more sense than agriculture today," he said. &#42

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