CLA President Harry Cotterell said the new planning guidelines, slimmed down from more than 1,000 pages to around 50, mark a great improvement and could kick-start rural innovation.
He said: "This reform of the planning system is long overdue. Now the Government and local authorities need to make sure it is effectively implemented to boost rural economic growth.
"The section on supporting a prosperous rural economy is excellent, laying the foundations for the growth of all types of business in rural areas. This includes conversion of existing buildings, constructing well-designed new ones, allowing new land-based rural businesses to get started and helping farmers to diversify."
The CLA President said the NPPF's "presumption in favour of sustainable development" will give a fillip to rural businesses, allowing planning applications to proceed more quickly in the many areas where the local authority has failed to produce an up-to-date plan.
Mr Cotterell added: "From an initial reading, it appears to be designed to boost a countryside in England that's desperate for jobs and housing and to give us the rural economic growth needed for the sound management of landscape, conservation and heritage."