Aldi has become the first retailer to commit to increasing the proportion of British flowers it sells by signing a new agreement.
At present only around 10 per cent of the flowers regularly sold at UK retailers are from British farms, and one element of NFU’s new Plants and Flowers Pledge is a commitment to increase the availability of British blooms.
The initiative builds on the union’s Fruit and Veg Pledge, which has secured commitments covering over half the fresh produce sold at the UK’s major supermarkets.
Launched during British Flowers Week at Lovania Nurseries in Preston, the Plants and Flowers Pledge ensures that ornamental suppliers are covered by the principles of the Groceries Supply Code of Practice in the same way as fresh produce suppliers.
It also sets out best practice for managing promotions and the need for longer-term agreements.
NFU vice president Stuart Roberts congratulated Aldi on becoming the first retailer to sign the pledge and thus committing to increase the proportion of British-grown plants and flowers it sells.
“Aldi has a track record of strongly supporting British farmers and growers and their commitment is not only good for growers but great for the public too,” he said. “I would urge all retailers to sign the pledge and back British farming.”
He added: “We have a plentiful source of local, seasonal plants and flowers that are ready to be utilised and a network of growers keen to provide more for the public.”
The pledge will add to the NFU’s past work to secure better and fairer trading relationships for its members through the Catalyst for Change initiative.
“The new pledge builds on this excellent work and reflects the importance of plants and flowers suppliers being treated equally,” said the NFU’s horticulture and potatoes board chair Ali Capper.