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pro landscaper magazine

HTA ‘disappointed’ by lack of environmental horticulture strategy

by | 14 May 24 | News | 0 comments

The Horticultural Trades Association warns the government to not miss the opportunity to support the “resilience and growth of environmental horticulture” in its official response to Rishi Sunak’s Farm to Fork Summit.

Commenting on the prime minister’s announcement of the Horticulture resilience and Growth Offer, Fran Barnes, chief executive of the HTA says “While the focus of the Prime Minister’s Summit is Farm to Fork and the indications for funding are that it is edibles focused, the government should not miss the opportunity to support the resilience and growth of environmental horticulture.”

Barnes goes on to underscore the environmental, economic and social importance of gardens and cultivated green spaces across England.

“Put simply, net zero and environmental improvements cannot be met without our sector. The health and wellbeing benefits of green spaces is widely recognised.

“It has, therefore, been incredibly disappointing that, despite a House of Lords inquiry recommendation, the government has no strategy for environmental horticulture.”

“Environmental horticulture also delivers for the economy, and our sector’s substantial contributions speak volumes”, with £28 billion added to the British economy, supporting 674 thousand jobs and generating £6 billion in tax revenues.

She adds that with the right support, the sector’s GDP footprint could exceed £41bn by 2030, and there are “very few – if any sectors – which can match the economic numbers with the environmental benefits and the social value of environmental horticulture.”

“The government has an opportunity to create a long-term view to grow our environmental delivery, and we hope they seize it.”

Last week the HTA welcomed the government’s response to the Shropshire Review into Labour Shortages, saying it provides “much needed certainty and confidence” to the sector.

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