A grower supplying Tesco with British apricots says the UK could become an exporter of the fruit.

Fifteen tonnes of fruit grown in Staplehurst, Kent, is to be sold in 200 Tescos across the country for the next six weeks.

Apricots are traditionally grown in France but changes to UK weather patterns - with milder winters and later springs - has made it possible to grow them here, and Tesco began working with fruit grower Nigel Bardsley five years ago to develop the fruit that went on sale this week on large-scale production.

Bardsley said production would increase and extend into September - when no other country produces apricots. “For the first time we may have France, Spain and other countries around the world buying apricots from Britain,” he added.