Agriculture is essential to economic growth in Africa; imports to the UK from Kenya alone are worth £100m, with trade providing direct employment for 135,000 people. There is no evidence that fewer aircraft would fly if less imported fruit and veg were eaten, as at least 60% of airfreighted fresh produce is brought to the UK in the bellyhold of passenger aircraft. Indeed, total airfreighted imports of fruit and veg account for 0.2% of total UK greenhouse gas emissions.
The Fresh Produce Consortium has lobbied hard for a balanced approach when considering the benefits of airfreighted produce for growers in developing countries.
We invite everyone to join in a stimulating debate on this topic at the Re:fresh conference on 13 May.
Nigel Jenney, chief executive, FPC