Shoppers urged to get behind Scottish soft fruit

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NFU Scotland is calling on shoppers to get behind Scottish soft fruit.

Poor summer weather has hit demand for strawberries and raspberries but some sunshine and help from consumers could still turnaround a difficult season.

Scottish soft fruit growers believe the poor spell of weather could have cost them as much as £10 million in poor sales and unharvestable crops so the support of retailers and shoppers in the coming weeks is crucial if the season is to be salvaged.

NFU Scotland’s soft fruit working group chairman Peter Thomson, who farms at Blairgowrie said: “Since May, we have had only three days when it hasn’t rained and that has hit demand for soft fruit, made picking the fruit difficult and had an impact on the quality and health of the crops.

“Crop losses of around 20 percent are a real disappointment and the weather has forced some growers to walk away from some crops to cut losses.

“However, the good news is that there are still plenty of quality berries to be picked and some summer sunshine could turnaround what has been another difficult harvest for Scotland’s soft fruit growers.

“We are asking shoppers to go out and source Scottish berries. They will be supporting local growers, buying in season and for their money they will get some of the tastiest and healthiest food that Scotland has to offer.”