Asparagus growers are predicting reduced yields this season due to a delayed harvest, which is around two to four weeks behind more ‘normal’ years.
A cool start to spring meant asparagus crops have been slow to develop, preventing many growers from harvesting crops as early as usual.
Norfolk grower, Tim Jolly says: “We started harvest 14 days later than we would have liked and this was entirely down to cooler weather in March and April.
Even now, challenging conditions have limited production: “Since the first weekend of harvest, production has tailed off due to cool and wet weather. It is temperature that really drives yield.”
This is likely to lead to a reduction in the total amount of asparagus produced this season.
“Unfortunately with asparagus, a late start to harvest does not correspond to a late finish, we still need to finish cutting towards the end of June.
“This means those two to three weeks at the beginning have been lost, we cannot make them up.
As a result, I imagine the vast majority of growers will find production is down for the season and per unit costs up. Thankfully, it has absolutely no impact on quality,” Mr Jolly says.