Raspberries grown in polytunnels are bigger and taste better than those grown in the open, the Scottish Crop Research Institute has claimed.

SCRI consumer taste tests on Scottish berries indicated that sweetness and flavour intensity were higher in fruit grown under plastic, and berries were also larger.

"New production methods, particularly growing under plastic, offer opportunities for season extension and improved quality," said scientist Julie Graham.

Critics argue polytunnels are an unnatural way of producing berries. However growers see the structures as essential for commercially viable crop production.