If you’re already a keen vegetable gardener, this may not be of a great worry to you. But to those of us who find mowing the lawn too much trouble, the following may be hard to swallow.
The agriculture minister David Heath has claimed that unless households start digging and growing their own food, we will face empty supermarket shelves as they will struggle to import enough food to feed us. The government are currently warning about future food shortages which could occur as the UK currently imports 40% of its food. The freezing temperatures earlier this year have already had an effect on crops, with potatoes, carrots, tomatoes and peas all being affected by waterlogged ground and low levels of light. More surprisingly this year Britain will need to import more wheat than it exports for the first time in a decade.
Over the past 10 years, the growth of tomatoes, cucumbers and spring onions in Britain has fallen so low that they have been labelled as “endangered”. Brussels sprouts, lettuce, leeks and cauliflower are also at risk of becoming “endangered”. If action isn’t taken by the government, there will be even less home grown food on supermarket shelves and food prices will continue to rise.
While we wait for the government to take action, people can do their bit by growing fruit and vegetables in their gardens. The number of people growing their own fruit and veg is already on the increase, as the share of fruit and veg grown in allotments and gardens rose from 2.9% in 2008 to 5% in 2011.
For those looking to make small changes, herbs, salad leaves, chillies and garlic are all easy to grow and a great way to get started. So why not give it a go and see what you can grow.
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Statistics provided by the Telegraph