Thursday, August 14, 2014

Victoria's Green Matters - 14th August 2014

Deal With IT's Secretary Victoria Nicholls writes a regular column in the East Kent Mercury The wheat harvest this year will be an exceptional one. This will be some consolation for the past two years when results were dismal because of the changing weather conditions. Our very mild, wet winter, early spring and long summer have produced ideal conditions for our farmers as far as wheat is concerned but we are far from self-sufficient in food production.

The power of the supermarkets has caused us all to be able to buy imported fruits and vegetables and to want to eat foods that were not native to this country and couldn’t be grown here because of our climate.

Traditional crops such as sprouts, cauliflowers and cabbages have shown a decrease in sales because people have had the choice of other, more exotic, vegetables brought from overseas, often by air, by the supermarkets. Where all fruit and vegetables were seasonal at one time, now everything is more or less available all year round with imports, no matter how many miles they have travelled to reach us.

Now things are changing rapidly and much can be produced here but we are not fulfilling our potential to grow these crops in this country. We have some of the best growing conditions in the world with good soil, water and lots of light but we are not making the most of them. If we are to be able to feed everyone we must start to grow crops which cope with the weather that will come our way in the future.

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