Crop association needed for stone fruit, says leading Kent grower Robert Pascall

Fruit growers are lacking a crop association to promote stone fruits after watching tons of this year's bumper plum crop go to waste.

This is the claim of Kent fruit farmer Robert Pascall, who produces 140 tons of Marjories and sits on the NFU Board for Horticulture & Potatoes.

He told Grower that the majority of his crop is still waiting for a customer — and that many plum growers have been forced to dump fruit or simply not harvest the plums as they struggle to find a buyer.

He believes this situation could have been avoided if stone fruit producers had a "bigger voice".

"We've not got a crop group association like most other crops — like British Summer Fruits represents soft fruit. So we really have to shout when we need something."

He added: "The story is last year there was not a good crop so the supermarkets already had their suppliers lined up. Imported plums are very good for some reason and therefore supermarkets are reticent to stock English plums."

Managing director Nick Marston of Berry Gardens, which represents some stone fruit growers, said: "The problem is that British plums are sold through a range of different outlets — reducing the marketing clout of the UK [stone fruit] industry. They are not as well presented as they might be."

For more on this story see next week's Grower.

 

Subscribe to Horticulture Week for more news, more in-depth features and more technical and market info.

 

 

 

 


Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles and free email bulletins

Sign up now
Already registered?
Sign in

Read These Next

How big are the UK and Europe's apple and pear harvests likely to be?

How big are the UK and Europe's apple and pear harvests likely to be?

After a sizeable dip last year, Europe's apple harvest looks to be back on track, and could even break recent records. But the wider global situation means it should find a ready market.

What is the future for glyphosate?

What is the future for glyphosate?

The horticulture industry has defended glyphosate after a landmark US court case saw chemical company Monsanto ordered to pay $289m (£226m) damages to a groundskeeper who claimed herbicides containing glyphosate had caused his cancer.

Should more be done to address farm thefts and other crimes?

Should more be done to address farm thefts and other crimes?

The cost of vehicle thefts from farms is rising, while trust in the police's ability to deal with rural crime is in decline, two new reports show.


Follow us on:
  • Facebook
  • LinkedIn
  • Twitter
  • Google +

Horticulture Week Top UK FRUIT PRODUCERS

See our exclusive RANKING of UK Fruit Producers by annual turnover plus the FULL REPORT AND ANALYSIS.

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

Professor Geoffrey Dixon

GreenGene International chair Geoff Dixon on the business of fresh produce production
 

Read Professor Geoffrey Dixon