More

    ‘Extreme weather in southern Europe threatening UK’s fresh food supply’

    iStock image

    Fresh fruits and vegetables will soon become more expensive and harder to obtain in the country as extreme weather in southern Europe is expected to reduce the supply to Britain, states a new study.

    According to new report by the Energy and Climate Intelligence Unit (ECIU), the UK is heavily reliant on the Mediterranean for lots of its fresh fruits and vegetables, and this produce will become more expensive and harder to obtain as extreme heat reduces yields, making a healthy diet unaffordable for the poorest in society.

    Just over a quarter of UK food imports – 9.8 billion kilograms, worth just over £16 billion – came from the Mediterranean region, most of which was staple fresh produce such as fruit and vegetables.

    Climate change is driving more extreme weather ­– including hotter, longer and more frequent heatwaves. Europe is warming at twice the rate of the global average from the last three decades. And the nations in southern Europe and northern Africa, around the Mediterranean, have experienced some of the worst heat extremes ever in the last few years.

    Spain alone, which is experiencing some of the worst climate impacts in the region, accounted for seven per cent of Britain’s food imports, worth £4 billion.

    More than half of Britain’s lemons and sweet peppers come from the Mediterranean, along with two thirds of all its oranges and 40 per cent of its table grapes. Reduced yields mean less food in our shops and markets, and higher prices for the commodities affected.

    The report’s further adds that UK households have already seen food price rises averaging £400 last year, as a result of climate impacts and fossil fuel price volatility.

    “It is sometimes suggested we replace commodities at risk by switching suppliers, repurposing land to grow more here, or even growing new foods as our own climate warms. However, climate impacts do not respect borders,” the ECIU said.

    “Even if the world succeeds in keeping temperature rises to 1.5°C, food producers in the UK, and worldwide, already face the need to adapt to these new climate extremes of higher average temperatures than humans have been used to for most of our existence on Earth.

    “Sharing best practice, as well as both government and private investment in that adaptation, can be an important means of mitigating the scale of the threat to food supplies.”

    Latest

    Tooting shop fined heavily for selling vapes, alcohol to children

    A south London shop which sold booze and vapes...

    Generational smoking ban can lead to black market war, warns Australian expert

    Prime minister Rishi Sunak has been warned by experts...

    Illegal cigarettes, vapes worth £12,500 seized in Darlington

    Thousands of illegal cigarettes and vapes have been seized...

    Don't miss

    Tooting shop fined heavily for selling vapes, alcohol to children

    A south London shop which sold booze and vapes...

    Generational smoking ban can lead to black market war, warns Australian expert

    Prime minister Rishi Sunak has been warned by experts...

    Illegal cigarettes, vapes worth £12,500 seized in Darlington

    Thousands of illegal cigarettes and vapes have been seized...

    McCain Foods acquires plant-based frozen food brand

    McCain Foods has acquired Strong Roots, a plant-based frozen...

    Tooting shop fined heavily for selling vapes, alcohol to children

    A south London shop which sold booze and vapes to children twice has been fined nearly £7,000. Lavender Hill Magistrates Court imposed the fine on...

    Generational smoking ban can lead to black market war, warns Australian expert

    Prime minister Rishi Sunak has been warned by experts against bringing phased generational smoking ban, citing scary examples of Australia where corner shops are...

    Illegal cigarettes, vapes worth £12,500 seized in Darlington

    Thousands of illegal cigarettes and vapes have been seized from four Darlington stores and a vehicle. Around 140 illegal vapes and 12,000 cigarettes were seized...