18 September 2017

Growers produce 1,000 British watermelons in bid to champion local produce

Growers have this summer produced 1,000 British watermelons – an exotic fruit which wouldn’t normally grow on UK soil – in a bid to champion local produce.

Asda, whose growers will be supplying the retailer, said it wanted to provide shoppers with “quality, fresh produce all-year-round”.

Grown in Kent, the melons mark the largest volume of British watermelons ever produced on home soil.

The cooler, wetter weather traditionally makes-for difficult growing conditions, but growers have implemented growing techniques that negate the need for consistently warm weather.

The melons have been cultivated in poly tunnels with insulated soil, so that heat is created naturally.

Joe Cottingham, Asda’s Watermelon Grower, comments: “We’re always looking at ways in which we can adopt innovative growing techniques to try and become more self-sufficient here in the UK and provide customers with more choice when it comes to the British produce they see on shelf.

“We’re proud to have worked closely with Asda to grow 1,000 British watermelons in a climate traditionally unsuitable for the fruit.”

It comes as news that the NFU said Brexit offers the Government the opportunity to Back British farming and improve the country’s food sustainability.

NFU Deputy President Minette Batters stressed the important role British farmers can play in securing Britain’s domestic food supply for the future, in a debate on food sustainability.

Figures show that Britain currently produces 60% of its own food, and according to the NFU, this figure is in long-term decline.

Credit to: https://www.farminguk.com/News/Growers-produce-1-000-British-watermelons-in-bid-to-champion-local-produce_47371.html