First a major sponsor of the London Olympics found to be importing 90% of its beef from Brazil until it was forced to do a U-turn and use British.
Next we hear rumours that if the ongoing liquid milk price crisis cannot be solved, we may in future be drinking cheap imported milk.
Now our proud agricultural identity is being challenged again with news that "almost all" of London's fish and chip shops have been using potatoes grown in Belgium. A major potato merchant in Flanders has been exporting an unprecedented 1000 tons of potatoes to Britain every week since June.
Heavy rain has waterlogged potato fields, which are yielding poorer crops and threatening a major price hike. Importing cheap potatoes offsets that, or so we're told. And we all know that the British don't like paying much for their grub because they've become used to artificially reduced prices. Supermarkets' penchant for BOGOFs and loss leaders, and fast food outlets' 99p meals, have combined to inure us to the true cost of producing food.
It's worth remembering that most of the potatoes grown commercially in England come from seed grown in Scotland. As such, we should insist on British potatoes even if, when they come into shops later in the summer, the main crops such as Epicure don't look as big and fat as before. Meanwhile, we have Ayrshire new potatoes, grown by the wonderful co-operative Girvan Early Growers, from now to September. Ayrshire has mostly escaped the worst of the wet weather and the damp that is causing, or threatening to cause, blight in later main crops.
If you can't get them in your local supermarket, try greengrocers or you local farmers' market. A great opportunity to really put your money where your mouth is.
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