New planning guidance has been introduced in Powys to make it easier to set up market gardens or smallholdings.

This approach aims to facilitate commercial vegetable and fruit growing, particularly in the county's rural regions outside of Bannau Brycheiniog National Park.

The advice covers the need to have accomidation nearby when running a small-scale horticultural business.

The changes should make it easier for peole to get planning permission from Powys County Council for a house in the countryside where a grower needs to be closer to their crops.

Matt Perry, Powys County Council’s chief officer – place said: "The evidence suggests that small-scale horticulture can be both highly productive and profitable, but despite this a large proportion of the vegetables and fruit we eat every day aren’t grown in Powys or even in the UK!"

According to a Food Security Index commissioned by DEFRA (Department for Environment Food and Rural Affairs), only 55 per cent of vegetables and 17 per cent of fruits consumed in the UK are grown in the country.

Mr Perry further added: "There is great potential for much more of the food we buy to be grown closer to home, boosting the Powys economy, providing a more predictable supply of fresh and nutritious produce and reducing our carbon footprints as we look to address the climate crisis."

Fruit and vegetable growers in Powys might also access financial support through the Welsh Government’s Food Business Accelerator Scheme.