Ben Franklin meeting with local residents John McIntosh, Linda Sparrow, Bill Hutton and Ean Jones at the site of a proposed food hub in Bangalow.
Ben Franklin meeting with local residents John McIntosh, Linda Sparrow, Bill Hutton and Ean Jones at the site of a proposed food hub in Bangalow.

$20m food hub a 'great idea' but in 'wrong place': Franklin

A $20 MILLION rural industries food hub should be built in another shire, not at Bangalow, says Parliamentary Secretary for Northern NSW, Ben Franklin.

Mr Franklin said he had received "overwhelming negative feedback from the community" and met with local residents at the site last month.

"It was clear to me that the size of the project is not in line with community expectations," he said.

"The village community of Bangalow is unique and its character and amenity must be preserved.

"For me, there are just too many concerns about the potential impact on the local environment, extra traffic, and the general impact on the local community for it to be supported."

But Mr Franklin said he "strongly supported" the development of a food precinct on the Northern Rivers.

"This is an emerging growth industry and could potentially be one of the keys to our economic success in this region," he said.

"I have had a range of discussions with community leaders across the Northern Rivers and am advised that there are other shires that have shown a high level of interest to have this precinct within their borders.

"I hope that the proponents of the project look seriously at moving the food hub to another location in our region.

"In a nutshell, I believe this is an example of 'great idea, wrong place'."

The Northern Star is seeking comment from the developers of the food hub.


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