Courgette crisis: Poor Spanish weather deprives United Kingdom of green vegetables

Courgette crisis: Poor Spanish weather deprives United Kingdom of green vegetables

Grocery stores over there have had to start rationing lettuce, broccoli, zucchini and eggplants ("courgettes" and "aubergines", in British-ese), and other vegetables because of bad weather in southern Europe, where most of those items are grown.

The crisis could even last until April if the weather in the Mediterranean does not improve, and prices would have to rise as a result.

Morrisons supermarkets have put in place a three per person limit on broccoli as well as iceberg lettuces too.

Asda, Britain's third largest supermarket, has introduced a ban on bulk purchases...

Retail analysts say supplies are down by almost a third on what would normally come out of southern Spain.

One notice at a Tesco store said: "Due to continued weather problems in Spain there is a shortage of iceberg lettuce".

Gina Sherpa said: "You know the lettuce shortage is real when you pay £1.19 in a Lidl UK for an iceberg". "We apologize for any inconvenience caused".

The vast majority of the UK's vegetables come from the city of Murcia in southeastern Spain during the winter months.

Vegetable production in the European Union is at 60 percent of the normal level due to bad weather affecting producers right across the Mediterranean, from Greece to Spain, the Spanish Federation of Associations of Producers and Exporters of Fruits, Vegetables, Flowers and Live Plants (FEPEX) said.

Shoppers are facing another wave of vegetable rationing after a harvesting drought has led to supermarket putting limits on sales of iceberg lettuce and broccoli.

Flooding in Spain and a cold snap of weather in January is to blame for the low stock of some vegetables, according to Dieter Lloyd from the British Leafy Salads Association.

"We want to stop local tradespeople and restaurateurs coming in and buying lots of stock". However, other businesses are experiencing shortages and we have seen some bulk buying in our stores.

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