SEE VIDEO: Minister wants West Norfolk farms to produce food, not energy

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Prime agricultural land must be maintained for producing food, not developing solar farms, according to environment secretary and South West Norfolk MP Elizabeth Truss.

Several rural sites across West Norfolk have been used for the energy generation processes in recent years, although a proposal for a similar development in Snettisham was rejected by councillors last month.

LtoR, Mark Leslie (Editor) with Henry Bellingham MP, Allister Webb (News Editor),  Elizabeth Truss MP at the Lynn News office in King's Lynn ANL-150516-095503009

LtoR, Mark Leslie (Editor) with Henry Bellingham MP, Allister Webb (News Editor), Elizabeth Truss MP at the Lynn News office in King's Lynn ANL-150516-095503009

Critics have raised concerns about the impact of the farms on food production, though developers maintain the schemes only use lower grade lands.

Ms Truss said one of her first decisions after taking up her government role last summer was to remove agricultural subsidies from solar farms.

And she believes that commercial roof spaces would be a better place for solar panels to be installed instead.

She said: “I think productive agricultural land should be used for food production.

“I’m in favour of renewable energy provided it’s in the right place.

“We have a really important food and farming industry in this county and I don’t want to see solar panels on really productive agricultural land.