The National Farmers' Union has urged other major retailers to follow Tesco's lead and work more closely with British organic farmers and growers.

The NFU and Tesco are holding discussions on how to increase the amount of British organic products on supermarket shelves.

NFU Organic Committee Chairman Oliver Dowding said: "These discussions bring organic growers and a major retailer in the shape of Tesco closer together and provide each with a better understanding of the issues."

Tesco has created a working group to help the supermarket meet its target of growing organic sales to £1bn by 2006.

Discussions have focused on supply chains and how British organic farmers can address the quality, availability and price issues that have an impact on where supermarkets obtain their stocks.

Dowding said: "Market issues will prove to be the key to the future development of our organic farming industry and the discussions with Tesco allow those issues to be progressed.

"I can't stress enough that without a fair price and profitability for UK organic farmers and growers to allow for necessary reinvestment, UK producers will not be able to supply this demand."