Grapes now represent 36 per cent of England’s soft fruit crop, Defra figures reveal
Vineyards are the fastest-growing edible agricultural crop sector in England, according to recent statistics issued by Defra.
The figures show that grapes now represent 36 per cent of England’s soft fruit crop – which saw a sector growth rate of +21 per cent in the last year, with strawberries and blackcurrants in second place at 21 per cent each.
British grapes’ share is set to grow further as the UK wine industry body, Wines of Great Britain (WineGB), has reported a 74 per cent growth in vine plantings in just five years to 4,300ha. This trajectory is set to continue as plantings are expected to reach 7,600ha by 2032, yielding a potential 24.7million bottles, according to WineGB.
In a statement, WineGB announced it has also set out an ambitious long-term sustainability programme to measure and reduce the industry’s carbon footprint and regenerate the natural environment to enhance biodiversity throughout Britain’s vineyards.