- Morrisons becomes the first UK supermarket to launch a support package that underwrites 100 percent of the costs associated with growing crops –
- Morrisons has invested £2 million in year-long trial and potato and carrot farmers are the first to benefit –
Morrisons has launched a new trial to support farmers by underwriting 100 percent of the costs associated with growing crops.
The trial will help British farmers mitigate the cost and weather pressures that come from the peaks and troughs of the season, including field rent, fertiliser cost and gives farmers greater financial security with Morrisons shouldering all the risk.
Crops are currently being grown on three potato farms and one carrot farm with the first produce from these farms due to hit shelves before the end of the year and into 2024. If successful, Morrisons hopes to roll out this scheme to more farms later next year.
Morrisons already supports farmers by buying whole crops and picking out any fruit or veg that is perfectly fine to eat but has a quirky shape or surprising size for its Naturally Wonky range.
Launched in 2015, Morrisons Naturally Wonky fruit and veg helps to minimise food waste in the field and offers affordable produce to customers. It also gives farmers an alternative route to market. The range includes 24 wonky varieties, and 27,000 tonnes of fruit and vegetables were sold this way in 2022.
Gareth Cosford, Senior Buying Manager for Root Vegetables at Morrisons says: “As British farming’s biggest direct customer we understand the impact that higher costs are continuing to have on farmers. Therefore our trial scheme allows us to take all the risk associated with growing the crop away from our farmers and continue to grow the best quality British produce that our customers know and love.”
Participating farms so far include Naish Farms Ltd. who grow potatoes for Morrisons.
Andrew Nash, Director at Naish Farms Ltd. said: “Morrisons already buy our whole crop of potatoes from us, taking the top-quality and also misshapen or oversized ones and making them available to customers as part of their naturally wonky range to maximise our return and offering the best value to their customers.
“In farming there are ups and downs throughout the season. For us we are seeing greater weather challenges which may impact our crops and by being part of this new Morrisons trial, they’re underwriting our growing costs to cushion us from the associated risks and provide supply security so that we can focus on growing the very best potatoes for their customers.”
Morrisons is British farming’s biggest direct supermarket customer and works directly with over 2,700 farmers and growers all year round to ensure customers can purchase products of the highest quality.
This week Morrisons is continuing to support the industry by sponsoring Farm 24, farming's biggest event which highlights the pride of the nation’s food producers. For more information, please visit: https://www.morrisons-farming.com/backing-british/farm24/