British cauliflower makes a comeback at Tesco – Grocery Gazette

British cauliflower is back at Tesco after bad weather dampened supplies over the festive period.

Over the past six weeks, UK retailers have had to import cauliflower from France and Spain to sustain demand for brassicas at Christmas.

Fortunately, Tesco has taken an additional 500,000 UK cauliflowers that have finally been harvested and will sell them at half price to manage the excess harvest.

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“Cauliflower is one of the hugely popular festive vegetables with Christmas dinner and as a result we are ordering a lot more of it for December,” said Sam Miller, purchasing manager at Tesco.

“In November we heard that our suppliers were not going to be able to fulfill our orders due to the poor harvest, causing serious problems across the UK market.”

TH Clements, one of the UK’s biggest cauliflower producers, said late Christmas orders harvested this week will leave a large surplus of extra cauliflower.

“We had some of the worst growing conditions for many years and it really hit us hard because we missed the big Christmas market,” said TH Clements commercial director Richard Mowbray.

The cauliflower season got off to a bad start as August and September did not see “cold nights important for growth”.

As a result, the crop only flowered in December instead of late October and early November, which delayed the harvest by a month.

Mowbray added: “We now have a large surplus of cauliflower and some of it would be wasted if Tesco had not stepped in to help.”

British cauliflower at Tesco now sells for 49p, instead of the usual 79p to reduce potential food waste.

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