So, the horsemeat scandal has continued to spread to other big retailers, furniture shops, schools and colleges.

I was surprised to get a nice email from Tesco with an admission that the horsemeat scandal has 'shaken trust' in the food Tesco sell and the chief exec has promised a review of meat products and greater transparency. The cynic in me makes me think this a knee jerk reaction to retain customers but the optimist thinks it is an important admission of guilt that will change UK food supply and industry for
the better.

After BSE and Foot & Mouth the UK developed strict and safe food supply, transport, storage and serving guidelines. In my previous life as a caterer we had ‘farm to fork’ tracking.

The UK has some of the best animal husbandry in the world and we grow some of the best food and
drink on earth. The push for ever cheaper, year round produce has resulted in a disjointed food supply system. We buy apples from New Zealand, South Africa and across Europe, we have the best apples on
earth but demand un-seasonal supply. It seems silly when you stop and think about apples flying across the globe.

Tesco’s commitment to ‘bring the food we sell closer to home’ is fantastic and hopefully will improve UK agriculture, safety and consumer trust. I always champion British fruits and vegetables.

English raspberries are in my opinion the greatest fruit on earth.

Roast parsnips, curly kale, asparagus and jacket potatoes are English veggies to be proud of.

The big supermarkets are seeing an increase in demand (pre horsemeat) for UK produce and post horsemeat this will increase. In the last five years there has been massive growth in UK cheese and beer ( I’m so happy!).

My local pub in Hackney has a microbrewery and Gin from the distillery a few streets away, my other local serves beer from Clerkenwell, Camden and London fields. We are in a resurgence of UK produce and cuisine.

Tesco will add its massive buying power to (hopefully) further improve the supply chain and produce.

UK seasonal food is:
More nutritious. A lot of vitamins and minerals are affected by storage and time
Taste better. Ever had a strawberry in December and wondered what it’s meant to taste of?
Better for the environment, (much) smaller carbon footprint
Better for the economy (UK)
Safer- more traceability
Cheaper (not always in supermarkets but definitely in markets)
My favourite guide for seasonal fruits and veg is   I have it on my fridge and give it out to lots of families. Have a look at   for more info on what is available in the UK

Why not grow your own fruit and veg?!
Hillingdon Council owns 35 allotment sites in total and it currently has approximately 155 vacant plots.
Most of the vacant plots are located at sites in the south of the borough. There are currently multiple vacant plots at Ashford Avenue, Belmore, Bourne Farm, Church Hill, Grosvenor Avenue, Pinglestone Close and
Stafford Road.

For more information visit