Prince Charles fascinated by 'dig for victory spirit' which 'swept through' Britain during coronavirus pandemic

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·Royal Correspondent
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PERTH, AUSTRALIA - NOVEMBER 15:  Prince Charles, Prince of Wales talks with Chief Executive Officer of the Botanic Gardens and Parks Authority, Mark Webb during a visit to the Biodiversity Conservation Centre, meeting with students undertaking post-graduate studies on November 15, 2015 in Perth, Australia. The Royal couple are on a 12-day tour visiting seven regions in New Zealand and three states and one territory in Australia.  (Photo by Richard Wainwright - Pool /Getty Images)
Charles said he was pleased to hear about the rise in seed sales. (Getty Images)

Prince Charles has said he was fascinated to hear that seed sales were on the up as Britain took on a “dig for victory” spirit through the coronavirus lockdown.

Charles, 71, has joined BBC’s Rethink project, which aims to discuss how the world could look after the lockdown.

The heir to the throne has already been vocal on his ambitions, calling for economic and social systems to be fairer and more resilient.

Charles voiced his views on food production and the environment in two spoken essays, broadcast on Friday.

Speaking on Radio 4’s Farming Today, Charles said: “It appears that most of us have given much more thought than perhaps has usually been the case to the story behind our food during COVID-19.

“Food availability was clearly an early issue; perhaps food shortages prompted many people to think for the very first time about whether they could depend on secure and reliable supplies of food in the post-COVID world?

“I was fascinated to hear that sales of vegetable seeds reached an all-time high as a ‘dig for victory spirit’ swept through the land and urban and country dwellers alike decided to requisition their gardens, allotments and window boxes to grow food in a way perhaps not seen since the Second World War.”

KINGSTOWN, SAINT VINCENT AND THE GRENADINES - MARCH 20: Prince Charles, Prince of Wales plants a tree during his visit to the Botanical Gardens during a visit to St. Vincent and the Grenadines on March 20, 2019 in Kingstown, St. Vincent and the Grenadines. (Photo by Phil Noble – WPA Pool/Getty Images)
Charles is a keen gardener himself and has been running organic farms since the 1970s. (Getty Images)

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He added: “So, with the explosion of interest in local food, in box schemes and online sales, could a transformation of our food and agricultural systems be one of the lasting legacies of this very challenging period in human history?”

Charles will also appear on World Service’s Newsday to warn that nature must be at the centre of the economy.

He will say: “As we rethink our world in the wake of the pandemic, it is increasingly clear that the health and wellbeing of people and planet are inextricably linked.”

Charles will add: “With so much opportunity in front of us, let us rethink our relationship with nature and reset for a better future. We have no time to waste.”

Earlier this month, Charles launched the Great Reset, with the World Economic Forum (WEF) to urge world leaders to forge a more sustainable future.

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At the time, he said: “In order to secure our future and to prosper, we need to evolve our economic model and put people and planet at the heart of global value creation. If there is one critical lesson to learn from this crisis, it is that we need to put nature at the heart of how we operate.

“We simply can’t waste more time.”

The essays will also be available as podcasts on the BBC Sounds app, introduced by Amol Rajan, the BBC’s media editor.

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