Berry Gardens Nick Marston told growers the nearly fivefold increase in UK soft-fruit production since 1999 had been helped by tunnel production, industry consolidation and varietal development, as well as by funding to producer organisations from the EU fruit and vegetable scheme.
Steve Edwards of LED supplier Phytolux said lighting technology should be viewed as part of a combined strategy involving factors such as irrigation. England Marketing PR & marketing manager Carolyn Hudson urged growers to consider how they could increase the rate of purchase among herb lines. AHDB chief executive Jane King highlighted the challenges of the increasing population coupled with stagnant farming productivity.
British Herbs chairman Nigel Stangroom said: "The herb industry needs to be aware of the challenges facing them and must also learn from others how they have developed to the benefit of their growers and their customers."