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THOUGH no indication of the overall cost was made available, a plan to add units at the Horeb Food Centre was given the green light.

Ceredigion County Council’s cabinet agreed that the authority “should drive the development and construction of Food Grade industrial units located immediately adjacent to the Horeb Food Centre.”

This will mean that the council has to buy approximately five acres of greenfield land, either using available grant funding or its own capital finance pot.

Consultants CamNesa assessed options for the food centre and a report included with the cabinet agenda stated that the “property outline has been set at two 300 square metre units and one 500 square metre unit.”

The company reviewed similar sites in south Wales and recommended that the units be increased in size to one 1,000 metre unit and two 500 metre squared units, “accepting that increased cost may be an issue.”

“Build costs for speculative food grade units have been assessed through actual cost analysis of new builds and conversion.

“Our assessment leads us to a minimum entry cost of £1,000 per sq.m to £1,600 per sq.m,” adds the CamNesa report.

Cabinet member for economy and regeneration Cllr Rhodri Evans said there was a possibility that funding may be available from the Welsh Government Targeted Regeneration Investment Programme (TRIp) “if there is significant de-commitment from the existing package of regionally endorsed projects.”

The proposal has been discussed and supported by the Development Team at a meeting in May, the cabinet report adds, with a market demand for units shown.

The potential to access renewable energy and “decarbonise” production was also highlighted.

Purchase of the land was agreed as was applying for TRIp funding to drive the proposal.

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