DEFRA has announced that British salad growers will be able to access EU aid provided in resopnse to the e coli crisis but will only have until the end of this month to apply for money from the 210 m Euro scheme.
The scheme is open to growers of tomatoes, lettuce, endives, cucumbers, sweet peppers and courgettes across the EU.
To receive the aid, which will represent approximately 50 per cent of market value, growers will have to prove products have been withdrawn from sale or not harvested between June 18 and June 30 as a result of the fall off in demand.
Speaking last week, Farming Minister Jim Paice said he wanted to be certain UK growers would utilise the scheme, which he stressed was not straightforward, before agreeing to set up the mechanism to apply.
But having taken advice from industry bodies, he announced on Monday evening that the scheme, which will be administered by the Rural Payments Agency, is open to British growers – but stressed that they need to act quickly.