Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 17°C

min temp: 13°C

ESTD 1874 Search

East Anglia: So far, so good for this year’s pea harvest, says Anglian Pea Growers

15:34 15 July 2014

Signs are positive so far for this year

Signs are positive so far for this year's pea harvest

East Anglian pea growers were more than a third of the way through harvest this week, and hoping for a good crop.


Chair of Anglian Pea Growers Richard Hirst said it was too early to say for sure at the moment as only about 35% to 40% of members’ crop is in, but so far it was looking “reasonable”.

“It has been a lovely growing spring but the heavy rain that Suffolk in particular had at the end of May has affected some crops,” he said.

“We have got very good quality across the board which is good from the consumer point of view, which is what we want, but until we actually finish, a whole lot of things can go wrong with peas. They are terribly water-sensitive. Certainly at the moment we are pleased with how things are going.”

Anglian Pea Growers is a farmers’ co-operative made up of around 120 farms from Bacton in Norfolk to Nacton near Ipswich, and between them they supply around 10 to 12% of the UK market..

Its peas, harvested using its own joint-owned machinery, are sent to the Norbert Dentressangle plant at Oulton Broad, near Lowestoft, to be frozen. The co-op sells to a company called Ardo, which is a Belgian family business with a UK arm. The peas are then sold to supermarkets throughout the UK where they are purchased by consumers as ‘own label’ produce. They are also sold to some food outlets.

Mr Hirst expected that they would finish harvesting the peas around the second week of August.

“We normally have about a 55-day harvest,” he explained. Today is about day 25 of the run.

The co-op was fairly unique in the level of co-operation between members, added Mr Hirst, who grows around 65 hectares of peas on his farm near Great Yarmouth.

How well pea growers will do this year is hard to tell, he said.

“A lot depends on how the crop turns out. Until the end of the season it’s a job to know how good it’s going to be,” he said.

“We have agreed a contracts and it depends on how we perform against that.”

Despite the East Anglian pea growers’ efforts, the UK still imports some peas. About 135,000 tonnes are grown here, but about 160,000 tonnes go into the market.

Farm manager at Home Farm Nacton, near Ipswich, Andrew Williams has already brought in his pea harvest.

“It has been a good growing spring,” he said. “We came out of a horrible winter and very wet winter but a very mild winter. We are on light land and a lot of the peas harvested (through Anglian Pea Growers) have probably been on light land,” he said.

“We had a nice run since then apart from that very wet time during May.”

An intense period where four inches of rain fell in a short period caused some headaches, he said.



Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other East Anglian Daily Times visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by East Anglian Daily Times staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique East Anglian Daily Times account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

Motorists were sent on a diversion nearly 30miles (47.7km) long

We all bemoan the diversions which close the highways and byways of Suffolk when roadworks are set up.

The Orwell Bridge

There have been a number of crashes on the county’s roads this morning.

Campaigners have been calling for a by-pass for decades.

Local councils are to spend £500,000 in a bid to kick-start proposals for a four villages’ by-pass – a move that could see the road opened by 2021.

Ipswich Crown Court.

A Suffolk man who sexually assaulted two schoolgirls has been jailed for 10 and a half years.

Gold cross pendants stolen in burglary in Inglis Road, Colchester, made from the wedding rings of the victim's late parents

Detectives want to find stolen four gold cross pendants made from the wedding rings worn by the victim’s late parents.

Paul Clement, chief executive of Ipswich Central

A major conference aimed at pushing ahead with dramatic changes to Ipswich town centre is to be held at the end of this month.

The area in Clarkson Street where two gangs fought on September 23

An Ipswich mother-of-two has told of how she was left terrified after getting caught up in the middle of fighting between groups of young men wielding bricks, lumps of wood and an axe.

David Acton, Hannah Hutch and Patti Love in Jane Wenham-The Witch of Walkern, which is touring Suffolk and Essex

A leading Suffolk private school has cancelled a play by an Oscar-winning and National Theatre-sponsored playwright because of fears about bad language and its subject matter which covers child abuse.

Sharon Halls and Daniel Compton's baby, Evie

The mother of a premature baby born 12 weeks early in the Dominican Republic has said they are not expecting to travel home before December.

A driver has been reported for summons for a number of offences following a collision on the A12 at Capel St Mary on September 5.

Most read

Most commented

Topic pages