Homegrown flavour is best
For Mick Flynn, of Interfruit Ltd, English produce is superior in taste. But a demand for out-of-season produce, the best looking veg, and keenest price has meant the imports are leading the way.
With a turnover of #5 million, his company buys vegetables from the UK and abroad, supplying restaurants, hospitals, football clubs and private schools daily.
Based at Birmingham?s Wholesale Market, Interfruit Ltd buys its vegetables from distribution centres like Planet Produce as well as individual farmers.
It buys whatever its customers demand, whether that be English strawberries or Dutch aubergines.
While some restaurants are keen to promote English produce when it is in season, the price difference has often left some demanding something of better value.
?With English asparagus you are looking at #2.50 a bunch where as imports from Peru are only #1 a bunch. Some restaurants ask for English.
?The Dutch are really making an impact, the vegetables look lovely but there is no flavour. They flood the place with imports and they don?t give local growers a chance to survive.?
?With imported produce and the prices they bring, British growers just can?t survive ? they should stop them from coming in.?
Mr Flynn said continuity of supply was vital in his business, and visiting dozens of farmers offering a small amount of vegetables was unrealistic.
?You could go down to one farm and they may only have one box of asparagus so you have to rely on distribution centres.?
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