From The Deputy Editor - Supplier showcase at Four Oaks

Because of Brexit shaking up the supply chain, there couldn't be a better time for buyers to attend the Four Oaks Trade show to see how suppliers are reacting to the changes, renew relationships with suppliers old and new and get on top of the latest thinking.

Four Oaks features more than 200 overseas exhibitors, among a sell-out total of 450 overall, so their feeling on Brexit will be worth finding out, particularly on pricing, as well as seeking out a plethora of new plant launches and product innovation.

The industry is adapting to changes Brexit will bring, but knock-on effects are widespread. The 23 June vote came at a good time for the industry at the end of the season, but at events such as the National Plant Show and SOLEX, uncertainty on wholesale pricing was rife. Surveying growers and retailers, the majority said they will raise plant prices for 2017 (see p4). Respondents blamed exchange rates as well as increased costs, pensions and wages. Hopefully, the survey will give suppliers confidence that prices are going up across the board.

There is an upside. UK growers can look at producing more plants, bringing import substitution closer to reality. NFU figures show fruit and vegetable home self-sufficiency has flatlined at about 61 per cent for more than a decade. Cut flower imports remain at 97 per cent but Dutch importers are concerned about pricing and UK producers sense an opportunity. Ornamental stock imports continue to match home production, but that could change.

Boningale chairman Tim Edwards expects Government incentives to increase production, but there will be price rises first. ADAS consultant Andrew Hewson says Brexit will be "liberating" for growers. Another way to beat price rises and boost demand for UK stock is shown by Neame Lea. Its new link with Zyon shows collaboration at its best, cutting costs and increasing demand in the face of outside pressures that no one can alter.

  • Follow the latest news and updates from the show in Horticulture Week's Four Oaks LiveBlog.

Before commenting please read our rules for commenting on articles.

If you see a comment you find offensive, you can flag it as inappropriate. In the top right-hand corner of an individual comment, you will see 'flag as inappropriate'. Clicking this prompts us to review the comment. For further information see our rules for commenting on articles.

comments powered by Disqus

Read These Next



These perfect pot plants for Christmas can be brought back into flower year after year, Miranda Kimberley explains.

Seeding, potting & transplanting

Seeding, potting & transplanting

Efficiency and flexibility are the key features of suppliers' latest machinery to help growers' production processes, Sally Drury reports.



These evergreen subshrubs with glossy foliage and plump red berries are much underrated, writes Miranda Kimberley.

Follow us on:
  • Facebook
  • LinkedIn
  • Twitter
  • Google +
Horticulture Jobs
More Horticulture Jobs

Pest & Disease Tracker bulletin 

The latest pest and disease alerts, how to treat them, plus EAMU updates, sent direct to your inbox.

Sign up here

Are you a landscape supplier?

Horticulture Week Landscape Project Leads

If so, you should be receiving our new service for Horticulture Week subscribers delivering landscape project leads from live, approved, planning applications across the UK.