'Growers need more sun'

Published: 31 Jul 2013

Tomato Growers Association says UK producers have been boosted by recent good weather. 
The recent sun has been a "welcome benefit" to UK growers after a slow start to the 2013 season, according to Phil Morley of the Tomato Growers Association (TGA). 
Morley predicted that most UK growers will see a five per cent decline on yields this year, but added a consistent spell of sun would be good for volumes and would help reduce the number of imported tomatoes. 
He told FPJ: "The recent summer weather has been a welcome benefit for UK growers who are seeing both yields and demand improving, though cheap imported tomatoes from southern Europe continue to dominate the shelves of some of our supermarkets, and we believe the demand for British is very much a priority for shoppers. 
"What growers and retailers really want is a steady last third of the season from July to October, good light for crops and demand due to hot weather will make this a profitable 2013 for most British tomato growers when compared to the last few years of poor weather and demand." 
Meanwhile, groceries code adjudicator Christine Tacon will make a pre-dinner address at this year's British Tomato Conference, it has been announced. 
The event dinner (25 September) will precede the main conference the following day, and this year's event will focus on disease and pest-control strategies as well as water and nutrient management tips for growers.  
"We really do believe the 2013 conference has something for everyone and are looking forward to the event with great anticipation," said Phil Pearson, chair of the TGA technical committee.  
Speakers at this year's conference include Mary Bosley, chair of the new Horticultural Innovation Partnership (HIP).

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