A LOCAL potato processing company will build a new building on a site next to a Haverfordwest school.

Planning permission has been granted for a vegetable processing facility on 7.8 hectares of agricultural land on the eastern side of Withybush Road, to the north of Ysgol Caer Elen.

The building, to be run by Puffin Produce in conjunction with its facility further along Withybush Road, will be around 17meteres at its highest point, with two production halls inside.

It will be a steel framed construction, clad in metal, with pitched roof including solar panels on one side.

Members of Pembrokeshire County Council’s planning committee approved the proposal at its meeting on July 28.

Councillors heard from planning agent Geraint John that the facility will create an extra 50 to 60 jobs, adding to the approximately 150 jobs at the current Puffin Produce site.

Cllr David Pugh said the plan was “part of a wider strategy supporting farmers and the farming industry” in the county and formed part of the economic plans for a regional food park in Haverfordwest.

Its development is not likely to impact on school expansion Cllr Vic Dennis was told, with the school site having space, and would not be a material consideration on this application.

Cllr Stephen Joseph’s comments about encouraging local workers to apply for the jobs rather than European agency staff would be passed on the economic development groups, the committee heard.

Conditions relating to landscaping and a noise and odour management plan for the 24 hour a day operation are included in the permission.