Morrisons vegetable buyers have predicted Britain could have the best crop of outdoor grown asparagus for nearly a decade.
Farmers are reporting that growing conditions and a predicted three month heat wave means the 2015 asparagus crop could increase by up to 20%.
Morrisons Asparagus Buyer David Bartle said: “Growing conditions look like they are going to be perfect. The good weather will not only affect the amount of asparagus grown but also the quality of the crop. We could have the most exceptional year since 2007.”
Morrisons expect asparagus to arrive in store on April 27.
Most of the crop will originate from the supermarket’s outdoor growers in the Vale of Evesham and Kent.
Due to the exceptionally warm growing conditions, this year’s asparagus will have tender spears with tight heads which will taste sweet and fresh.
David’s top ten asparagus facts:
- Asparagus was first documented in 300BC in Egypt and is said to have arrived in Britain with the Romans in the first century AD.
- Each crop is in the ground for ten years and takes three years to grow to maturity before harvest.
- The asparagus season traditionally runs from St George’s Day to the Summer Solstice.
- Approximately one tonne of asparagus grows per acre of land.
- Most British asparagus is green. Morrisons sells Mondeo, Gueleph, Millennium and Gijnlim varieties.
- The best quality of asparagus has tight crisp tips andfirm green spears.
- For best results, the vegetable should be lightly cooked – between 3-6 minutes – and eaten ‘al dente’ with butter.
- Asparagus contains A, B and C vitamins, fibre and folic acid, and is virtually fat-free. These nutrients can boost your immune system, maintain healthy skin, nails and hair, and are good for the heart.
- Asparagus is said to have aphrodisiac properties – though this has never been proven!
- Some people – but not all – experience strange smelling urine after eating asparagus. This is due to sulphur-containing amino acids in the vegetable. It’s thought the ability to detect the odour is a result of some people breaking amino acids down during digestion and others having the nasal receptors needed to pick up the smell.