Row as Tesco ships Peruvian asparagus 6,000 miles to British town where it is grown

May 10, 2010 | by | 0 Comments

Supermarket-giant Tesco was blasted for selling asparagus from 6,000 miles away – in a town famous for growing the vegetable.

Thousands of tons of asparagus are grown each year in Evesham, Worcs., – making it the UK’s main supplier.

But residents were shocked when they visited the supermarket to find that asparagus had been shipped in – from PERU.

Furious locals – who take part in an annual asparagus festival – have now threatened to boycott the corporation until it sells local produce.

Paula Gordon, from Evesham, Worcs., said: ” I don’t normally buy fruit and veg from supermarkets but I was really surprised to see the asparagus wasn’t local, especially in the area that we live.

”I think Tesco should be supporting local suppliers. It’s such a shame it had to come all the way from Peru. I could understand if asparagus was out of season.

”There are a lot of local people who take pride in Evesham’s rich history of asparagus growing. They could even boycott the store until it shops locally.”

Shopper Terrance Anderson, 48, added: ”I won’t be shopping in Tesco again after this. It’s an insult to our heritage.

” My grandfather grew asparagus and he would be up-in-arms about this. I know plenty of people who feel the same way as me.”

Several crates of foreign asparagus were being sold inside the high street supermarket last week.

It is understood that the Peruvian asparagus has been on sale there for several weeks and will continue throughout the Summer.

Asparagus author Chris Sheehan said: ”Asparagus has been grown locally in Evsham for two centuries. It’s what the area is famous for.

”You only need to tastes the two different types of asparagus and the difference in quality is obvious. Peruvian gras is no where near as nice.

”There are plenty of very large suppliers of asparagus in Evesham and there are dozens of road side stalls so there’s no excuse for Tesco to be selling overseas goods.”

Tesco spokesman David Nieberg said: ”We’re very supportive of locally sourced produce and we’re stocking the foreign asparagus in a bid to keep up with demand for the seasonal vegetable.

”We were the very first supermarket to get British asparagus on the shelves this year and we sell more British asparagus then any other supermarket.”

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