The first English strawberries of the 2017 season have arrived on Tesco shelves in what’s being described as one of the earliest-ever arrivals for the seasonal favourite.
Available in stores from today (28 February), the strawberries are the early season Driscoll’s Lusa variety, grown by Medlar Fruit Farms in Lancashire.
The early arrival means this year’s British strawberry season will run for an extended season of around nine months, Tesco said.
Tesco’s strawberry buyer Henry Maulik said: “Helped by the recent warmer temperatures, this is the first time in ages that UK strawberries grown for supermarkets have been picked in February.
“This brilliant but rare opportunity for customers to enjoy English strawberries so early in the year, is great news for shoppers.”
The retailer also pointed out that early season strawberries are usually grown in Kent, Sussex or Wales, whereas this year they are from Lancashire for the first time.
Medlar managing director Steve Bell said: “We’re pleased to have been able to put Lancashire well and truly on the map for strawberries.
“The Driscoll’s Lusa variety are hugely popular with customers because of their fantastic flavour. We’ve been working with Tesco to extend the British season, so that shoppers can enjoy them for even longer.”
Medlar Fruit Farms is expecting its strawberry season to run until mid-November, Bell added.
The arrival from Medlar will be followed swiftly by new season strawberries from Herefordshire-based S&A Produce, due to arrive on Tesco shelves next week.