Enterprise Clinic: Is our orchard chargeable for enterprise charges?

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Whether or not it’s a authorized, tax, insurance coverage, administration or land concern, Farmers Weekly’s Enterprise Clinic specialists may help.

Sam Shaikh, affiliate, Carter Jonas affords recommendation on enterprise price points, and right here appears to be like at a query a couple of cider orchard.

See additionally: Enterprise Clinic: what are the premiums for battery storage?

Q: We develop 150-200t of cider apples on a 6.3ha orchard and produce cider and associated merchandise equivalent to apple cider vinegars.

That is our solely land aside kind 2ha on which we hold sheep. In keeping with Millington v Secretary of State, the manufacturing of cider, like wine, qualifies as agricultural. 

All the pieces we make is produced on the farm. In our on-site farm store/tasting room (84sq m mixed) 90% of gross sales are our personal product, primarily cider.

There’s seating for individuals who come on academic farm excursions after which purchase our merchandise.

We’ve got a premises licence to have the ability to maintain and promote alcohol from the farm. Having the tasting room for the sale of cider doesn’t due to this fact require a change of use in accordance with planning legislation.

We’ve got 14 tent tenting pitches between the rows of apple bushes. No change is made to the land/web site to accommodate them, however we offer showers on skids.

Does planning legislation relating to agricultural holdings equivalent to cider farms and vineyards have an effect on legal responsibility to enterprise charges?

We’re being charged enterprise charges for a farm store, tenting and premises however query whether or not our tasting room and tent tenting ought to be caught by enterprise charges?

A: Whereas planning legislation and use courses will govern land and growth permissions, the planning system has a restricted bearing on ranking and enterprise charges.

The interface of the 2 entities is complicated and the ranking system depends by itself set of ideas, formed by many years of case legislation precedent and laws, impartial of modern-day planning laws.

Enterprise charges is a tax on occupation of the land and buildings topic to assembly 4 important standards (precise; unique; helpful; and permanence/transient occupation), until the properties are exempt.

Agricultural exemptions

An agricultural exemption from enterprise charges exists and is contained inside Schedule 5 of the Native Authorities Finance Act 1988. This exemption extends to agricultural land and to some extent agricultural buildings.

Agricultural land is outlined, amongst different descriptions, as “arable, meadow, or pasture land solely […] and something which consists of market backyard, nursery floor, orchard or allotment”.

Orchards, that are intrinsic to the cider-making course of, are explicitly included inside the laws, indicating that the agricultural exemption could apply to the cider orchards.

Tasting rooms

Nevertheless, when trying on the tasting room, the state of affairs turns into extra intricate.

To be eligible for an agricultural exemption, agricultural buildings have to be used solely along with agricultural operations on agricultural land.

Subsequently, because the tasting room will incorporate actions such because the processing and sale of products, it’s more likely to be deemed separate to the agricultural operations.

Consequently, the tasting room would normally be labeled as rateable property in an analogous method to the farm store.

The related laws doesn’t explicitly point out wineries and vineyards. These properties usually fall into the class of rateable properties and wineries and vineyards have their very own class within the ranking checklist.


Relating to the campsite, whereas enterprise charges are certainly relevant to caravan and campsites, the scale, scale, configuration and permanence of the location are all essential concerns.

Smaller campsites could discover they’re eligible for small enterprise price aid, whereas for bigger campsites, enterprise charges is usually a very complicated concern.

You need to discover reliefs together with small enterprise charges aid, which can be accessible based mostly on the specifics of your circumstances and the rateable worth of the property in query.

Do you’ve gotten a query for the panel?

Define your authorized, tax, finance, insurance coverage or farm administration query in not more than 350 phrases and Farmers Weekly will put it to a member of the panel. Please give as a lot data as attainable.

E mail your query to [email protected] utilizing the topic line “Enterprise Clinic”.


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