UK retailer Morrisons has launched a new trial project to support British farmers by underwriting 100% of the costs associated with growing crops.
It will also give farmers greater financial security, with Morrisons shouldering all the risk.
The trial is underway in four farms – three potato farms and one carrot farm – with the first produce due to hit shelves before the end of the year and in early 2024.
Should the trial succeed, Morrisons hopes to roll out this scheme to more farms later next year.
Gareth Cosford, senior buying manager for root vegetables at Morrisons said, "As British farming’s biggest direct customer, we understand the impact that higher costs are continuing to have on farmers.
"Therefore, our trial scheme allows us to take all the risk associated with growing the crop away from our farmers, [enabling them to] continue to grow the best quality British produce that our customers know and love."
Morrisons supports farmers by buying whole crops and picking out any fruit or vegetable that is perfectly fine to eat but has a quirky shape or surprising size for its Naturally Wonky range.
Launched in 2015, the Naturally Wonky fruit and vegetable range gives farmers an alternative route to the market, helps to minimise food waste in the field, and offers affordable produce to customers.
The range offers around 24 'wonky' varieties, and 27,000 tonnes of fruit and vegetables were sold under the range in 2022.