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Why we should all be buying British tomatoes this summer

Why we should all be buying British tomatoes this summer
With tomato season in full swing, we take a look at tomato growers a little closer to home
We’re big lovers of tomatoes here in the UK and each year we eat around 500,000 tonnes of them. British-grown toms are famous for their flavour and they’re in season from now until November.  
Tomato shortages made the news earlier this year due to bad weather in Europe and Africa which disrupted supplies to the UK. Following this, Google searches for British tomatoes, shot up by 293%. Luckily, British toms are now back in full force on our supermarket shelves, making it the perfect time to enjoy them. 
Buying British tomatoes comes with a whole host of benefits: 
  • It’s more environmentally friendly, as carbon emissions are dramatically reduced in comparison to buying imported varieties. 
  • It helps support local growers and the economy here in the UK. 
  • They’re arguably more tasty as they’re kept on the vine for longer, meaning they absorb as much flavour as possible before reaching your plate. 

Boosting your health 

British tomatoes are packed with nutrition and help boost your immunity and heart health. Last year, the British Tomato Growers Association worked with scientists at the University of Portsmouth to look at the health benefits of a tomato-rich diet.
"Tomatoes can improve your gut health and boost exercise recovery"
The study revealed that tomatoes are an all-round health superhero and include antioxidants and compounds like lycopene and beta-carotene which can protect you against cancer and other serious diseases. The results also showed that tomatoes can improve your gut health and boost exercise recovery. 

Celebrating great British growers

It’s been a challenging couple of years for fruit and vegetable growers across the UK, who have been up against sky-rocketing energy prices, labour shortages and manufacturing delays. 
Richard Diplock is Managing Director of The Green House Growers in Sussex who have been farming fresh, sustainable food since 1977. 
They produce tomatoes on almost 100 acres of land across their farms and focus on eco-friendly farming as a natural choice for cultivating the best quality crops. 
Their carbon footprint is amongst the lowest of any producer in the UK and they use high-tech computer systems to control the temperature, humidity and watering of their greenhouses 24 hours a day.
"They produce tomatoes on almost 100 acres of land across their farms and focus on eco-friendly farming as a natural choice for cultivating the best quality crops"
They also don’t waste a drop of water and collect rain from their greenhouse to irrigate the crops. They store this in their own large reservoir which is home to wildlife including swans and ducks. When it comes to pest control, they use an army of predatory insects and rely on bumblebees to help pollinate the plants.  
Richard says: “We’re proud to produce our tomatoes in an eco-friendly way and strive to develop our sustainable approach to farming each year. We’ve been operating for over 46 years and it’s fair to say a lot has changed since the 70s, but we continue to grow high quality, fresh produce with the same enthusiasm. 
“We’re all guilty of not truly knowing where our food comes from, as this becomes a greater priority for many, it’s not too late to start checking the label to make sure we are buying British provenance where possible. This simple check can contribute to an overall more positive global impact, reducing carbon footprint and supporting the local economy”.  

The best ways to enjoy British toms


Tomatoes are a versatile fruit and are a staple ingredient in a lot of popular meals. Whether you’re looking for a light snack or a quick healthy meal, they make the perfect option for breakfast, lunch and dinner. 
"Remember, fridges do flavours no favours"
It’s best to keep your toms stored in a cool, dry place. Remember, fridges do flavours no favours!  
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