Crops of potatoes, onions, carrots and lettuce will be much smaller over the next few months, due to the extended period of dry weather. The situation has been made worse by curbs on irrigation licences to preserve water supplies and rising production costs that have forced farmers to plant fewer winter vegetables.
Tom Bradshaw, of the NFU farmers’ union, told trade journal The Grocer: “The writing is on the wall. I can’t see how potato yields are going to be anything but well below average.”
British Growers Association chief executive, Jack Ward, added: “We could be looking in some instances at reductions of up to 50 percent in production.”
Crops in Scotland, however, are likely to be affected least because the region gets more rain.