Overview

The Victorian Government is committed to protecting the long-term future of agricultural land in Melbourne’s green wedge and peri-urban areas. Some of Victoria’s most productive agricultural land is within 100 km of central Melbourne. In 2015-16 the region grew 10 per cent of Victoria’s agricultural produce, including 59 per cent of vegetables.

Melbourne’s green wedges also support Melbourne through biodiversity, recreation, tourism, open space, natural resources, heritage and landscape conservation, and critical infrastructure provision.

Protecting the significant features and assets found in these areas is important for ongoing environmental, economic, cultural and health and wellbeing outcomes.

Proximity to Melbourne, the rapid pace of growth and change, and the range of other land uses competing for space make these areas some of the most contested in the state. Beautiful and scenic rural landscapes near Melbourne are an attractive location for urban development and rural living. These urban uses compete with agriculture, resulting in the permanent loss of agricultural land and associated businesses.

Robust planning controls are needed to maintain the benefits provided by green wedge and peri-urban areas and manage land use to support long term agricultural use that serves the needs of Melbourne’s growing population.

Consultation on improving planning for Melbourne’s green wedges and agricultural land

In 2019 we engaged with farmers, community members, industry, local government and stakeholders to test criteria for protecting agricultural land around Melbourne. You can read the consultation findings report here.

We have considered your feedback and have developed planning options to deliver lasting protection of agricultural land and guide decision-making in our green wedges.

These options are outlined in a consultation paper, which will be available to download on this page when the public consultation launches.

Update on consultation approach and timing

Due to the public health and safety measures in place across the state, the public consultation planned for the Planning for Melbourne’s Green Wedges and Agricultural Land project has been delayed.

The Government’s intention to permanently protect Melbourne’s green wedges and vital agricultural land from overdevelopment remains as strong as ever, however for the benefit of all Victorians it is necessary to delay public consultation while Stage 3 and 4 restrictions are in place across the state.

New public consultation dates will be announced in due course. We thank you for your patience and understanding.

What are the next steps for the project?

We will consider community and stakeholder feedback received during the consultation process as we refine the options for improving planning for Melbourne’s green wedges and agricultural land. We will collate and analyse feedback received during the consultation period, and report on results.

Previous Consultation

The first step to protect food production in the green wedge and peri-urban areas was to understand the potential of the land. Technical research informed the development of draft criteria to protect agricultural land, which were available for community consideration and comment from 12 March 2019 to 17 May 2019. An independent consultation findings report was released in September 2019.
Consultation Findings Report - Protecting and Supporting Melbourne's Strategic Agricultural Land
PDF (1.27 MB)
Consultation Findings Report - Protecting and Supporting Melbourne's Strategic Agricultural Land
MS Word (2.96 MB)
Summary of feedback and participation - Consultation on protecting and supporting Melbourne's strategic agricultural land
JPEG (348.94 KB)

Background Research

These technical studies informed the previous stage of the project and engagement on protecting Melbourne's agricultural land.
Agriculture Victoria Land Capability Research
PDF (7.63 MB)
Deakin University Land Suitability Assessment
PDF (9.28 MB)