Fresh produce output rise outrun by energy cost hike

The value of Britain's fresh produce output showed a positive rise of more than 12 per cent last year, to just over £2.6bn.

Fresh vegetables and potatoes showed particularly strong growth, while fruit held steady. All three categories have shown considerable growth since 2005, rising 42 per cent across the sector.

However, set against these is the steady rise in costs, particularly energy, which increased nearly 10 per cent across agriculture as a whole last year, and nearly 55 per cent since 2005. The overall profitability of UK farming fell by 3.6 per cent in 2010 as the industry saw input costs rise by 5.5 per cent.

UK cabbage production rose six per cent in 2010 to just over 248,000 tonnes, with nearly two-thirds being harvested in winter. But British Brassica Growers Association chairman Phillip Effingham said this figure was misleading.

"Sales have been falling in recent years, and there is a lot of wastage in the industry,"

he told Grower. "The rise in oil-driven costs has almost meant a price deflation in real terms."


Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles and free email bulletins

Sign up now
Already registered?
Sign in

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

What does the 25-year plan mean for growers?

What does the 25-year plan mean for growers?

Published on 11 January, the Government's long-awaited 'A Green Future: Our 25 Year Plan to Improve the Environment' brings together a number of policy strands into a single framework that will impact many sectors, not least fresh produce, over the coming decades.

What will 'embracing change' mean for horticulture?

What will 'embracing change' mean for horticulture?

At the Oxford Farming Conference, whose theme was "embracing change", Defra secretary Michael Gove expanded on what a post-Brexit UK agriculture and land-use policy will look like and how it will impact farmers and growers.

Can growers see off the looming labour crisis by boosting efficiency?

Can growers see off the looming labour crisis by boosting efficiency?

Concern over the availability of seasonal labour to the fresh-produce industry has never been greater.