Cranfield, Cobrey and ICA seek to extend popular British asparagus season

British asparagus hits shelves early at Waitrose

Produce Business report

A bonus for UK customers, British asparagus season will begin more than a month earlier than usual at one retailer.

Waitrose announced that the first of its shipments arrived in supermarkets on Saturday, bucking a trend that has seen asparagus availability typically hit the shelves in mid to late April. Thank the weather, officials say, as temperatures have been a bit higher than normal to start the new year.

“We’re delighted that this year’s crop will be available earlier than usual,” Lucy Darby-Smith, Waitrose Vegetable Buyer said. “It’s a clear sign that spring is on its way and we’re certainly looking forward to the warmer weather.” 

Supply during this time of year typically comes from other countries such as Peru. But those temps have helped produce the bumper crop, which comes from polytunnels in Hampshire and Waitrose grower Sandy Booth in the New Forest, who says that because of the natural “coir” it uses, availability has been more rapid in 2022. He says, “we’re confident that this early crop will be some of the tastiest asparagus on the market.”

Waitrose is selling the early season asparagus from £3.50 for a 200g pack.



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