A new state-of-the-art 1.5 hectare greenhouse complex in Evesham is helping retailer Waitrose to stock British salad leaves all year round.
The new glass, which has been developed by Wingland Foods uses efficient LED lighting, heating and watering, reducing the environmental impact. It takes 35-40 days to grow the salad in these conditions compared to up to 16 weeks in the field so the yield is almost three times higher over the course of a 12 month period.
The first salad to be produced is Waitrose’s British Chard & Salad Leaves bag, making the supermarket the first supermarket of the year to introduce a UK grown salad bag, available three months earlier than the usual May-October season.
Nicola Waller, Waitrose Head of Fresh Produce, said, “This launch is a result of our long term planning and it’s great to see the first of our British salad bags hitting the shelves so early in the season. Developing this innovative new way of growing salad leaves means that we can source from the UK all year round, going even further in our commitment to British farming.”
The salads are also grown to LEAF (Linking Environment and Farming) Marque Standards.