English Apples & Pears (EAP), the trade body representing UK apple growers, is predicting a great crop of British apples this year, thanks to major orchard investment opening up the potential for more British apples to be available to shoppers year-round, than ever before.
EAP Executive Chair, Ali Capper says: “Throughout the last 10 years, the British apple industry has increased market-share by 50%, investing over £120 million in technology, research and development. At the same time, we’ve planted over eight million new trees to ensure that we continue to grow more of the highest quality apples that shoppers want to buy and enjoy eating.We’ve invested heavily in our Gala, Braeburn and Bramley apple orchards, as well as in new varieties like Red Windsor, Red Prince, Junami, Jazz, Smitten, Kanzi, Rubens, Opal, Cameo, Kentish Kiss, Magic Star and Flanders Pink. This opens up the opportunity for even more British apples to be available throughout the whole year.”
Ali Capper adds: “British shoppers want British produce. Right now, just two out of every five fresh apples consumed in the UK are home-grown, but with this continued level of investment, we are confident that we can increase this to three in five by 2030 – bringing the UK closer to apple self-sufficiency. We need our retail, foodservice and wholesale market customers to fully support our growth strategy, so that we can continue to deliver the best tasting British apples and pears to shoppers.”
She continues: “We’re not only focused on ensuring that great quality, nutritious and delicious British apples are available to consumers throughout the year, our industry also supports an environmentally-friendly way of living. After all, our home-grown apples and pears have not been shipped across the world to get to us, they’re grown right here.”
The positive environmental impact of British apple and pear growers doesn’t stop there. Our farmers care for the local ecosystem in and around their orchards, from attracting bees and pollinating insects, to irrigation and water-recycling techniques that help to minimise wastage.
Ali Capper concludes: “There are so many health reasons to choose an ‘Apple a Day’, but for us it’s also about buying British to support our national economy and protect our beautiful countryside.”