South West growers report strong sales amid downturn

Exhibitors at the South West Growers Show have reported good business despite the economic climate.

Albion Plants owner Brenda Huggons said: "Business is really positive and last year was our best ever. Some people are holding up, but others want to get in now and we are digging deeper with the customers we have. We are getting orders and lots of interest."

Jackson & Son nursery manager Kevin Stone added: "We are within £200 of last year, which is a good indicator of how things are going. Growers have diversified, but business hasn't dropped off."

XL Horticulture managing director Les Lane said this year was better than last. "It's something to do with the geographical area," he revealed.

"It's partly because a big percentage of the population in this area is retired. People don't need a mortgage. We supply independent retailers from Bristol to Penzance and garden centres here are doing well."

Ball Colegrave technical sales representative for the South West Steve Rudhall said: "The remoteness of this region, especially from other suppliers, means that it is difficult to bring in produce. This is an advantage for local businesses."


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