Growers in Israel are still assessing the extent of crop damage caused by last week’s sub-zero temperatures in the Arava Valley.

“Damage to tomato crops has been severe,” David Crossland of Arava Growers told freshinfo. “Peppers have weathered the frosts better, but the plants have taken quite a jolt, and in many cases have stopped growing.

“It is the herbs that are really suffering, however, particularly dill, which is grown outside and has come to a complete halt, and basil, with volumes dropping by 50 per cent and the crop now showing cosmetic defects.

“However, the UK is our priority market, so although it has been problematic, we have managed to keep our deliveries going, sort out the peaks and troughs and minimise disruption,” Crossland added.

Amos Orr, general manager of Agrexco UK, told freshinfo: “Some tomato, potato, pepper and avocado plants have been affected, also some mango trees and, to a lesser extent, fresh herbs. It could still take us up to two weeks to get the whole picture.”