First vegetables from Thanet Earth go on sale

The first vegetables from Thanet Earth in Kent went on sale last week "heralding the dawn of the UK's first round-the-year salad crop production".

Cucumbers, produced at Thanet Earth, Britain's biggest greenhouse complex, will mean a big reduction in out-of-season imports and will boost UK salad crop production by 15%, a representative said.

Other vegetables grown at the site, the size of 25 football pitches, are tomatoes and peppers. These will be available to consumers in Kent and nationally across Tesco stores.

Philippa Anderson, Tesco local sourcing marketing manager, said: "Until now no British grower has been able to grow year-round salad produce because of the enormous cost of heating glasshouses.

"The opening of Thanet Earth makes that possible and our Kent customers will be the first to benefit. It also means a major reduction in freighting salad over from Holland, Spain and Morocco during the winter months."

Thanet Earth cost £80 million to build across 18ha. Each greenhouse is heated by a gas-powered combined heat-and-power system and 700 staff work at the complex.


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