Why are Asda and Morrisons rationing salad staples and what foods will I be limited in buying?
Asda and Morrisons are currently being forced to ration salad items.
From today, Morrisons is putting limits of two per item on packs of tomatoes, cucumbers, lettuce, and peppers, and Asda is limiting shoppers to three items on eight fresh-produce lines.
According to industry insiders, the availability of produce is down by between 30 and 40 per cent on certain crops.
Here’s what you need to know about the current fresh-food shortages.
Why are Asda and Morrisons rationing fresh food?
Asda and Morrisons are rationing fresh food due to shortages caused by poor weather in Europe and north Africa - with the problems expected to last for weeks.
UK producers said supplies from British farms would also be affected, because many people have reduced planting amid the rising cost of heating greenhouses to grow salad crops.
According to Minette Batters, the National Farmers’ Union president, more rationing of salad items should be expected.
On Tuesday (February 21), she told the NFU’s annual conference in Birmingham: “Domestic production of salad, including cucumbers and tomatoes, has fallen to its lowest level since records began in 1985.”
She added that energy-intensive producers needed help with their bills, saying: “We can do something about it, but it needs Government to act to drive down inflation in primary production.”
What food will I be limited in buying?
From today, Morrisons is putting limits of two per item on packs of tomatoes, cucumbers, lettuce, and peppers.
On Tuesday, Asda said it was limiting shoppers to three items each on eight fresh produce lines - including broccoli, cauliflower, raspberries, and lettuces - to make sure customers could get what they need.
A spokesperson said: “Like other supermarkets, we are experiencing sourcing challenges on some products that are grown in southern Spain and north Africa.
“We have introduced a temporary limit of three of each product on a very small number of fruit and vegetable lines, so customers can pick up the products they are looking for.”
Tesco, Sainsbury’s, Waitrose, Aldi, and the Co-op are not currently planning to introduce restrictions.
It comes as UK importers carry on struggling with the increased costs prompted by Brexit, which has led to hold-ups at the border and bureaucratic issues.