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Press releases

HTA urges next Prime Minister to prioritise industry

Horticultural Trades Association

2 min read Partner content

HTA Chairman James Barnes has written to Liz Truss and Rishi Sunak as the final leadership candidates seeking to become Prime Minister.

In his letter, James Barnes outlines the importance of the Horticultural Industry in the UK and identifies some of the challenges facing gardening businesses.

The HTA is calling on the next Prime Minister to consider and prioritise Britain’s garden centres, tree and plant growers and landscapers in able to grow the economy, support jobs and meet environmental targets. The letter can be found below:

Dear Rt Hon Liz Truss MP & Rt Hon Rishi Sunak MP

I write to you as Chairman of the Horticultural Trades Association (HTA), we represent 1500 members in the UK’s Horticulture and Gardening industry.

We are the original ‘green industry’ and I hope you agree that we make a hugely positive difference to communities up and down the country. Ornamental Horticulture in the UK:

  • Employees 674,200 people
  • Contributes £28.8 billion in GDP
  • Generates £6.3 billion in tax revenue
  • Underwrites 50% of the UK’s 25-year Environmental Plan
  • Provides physical and mental health benefits

With support from Government and other key stakeholders these figures can grow rapidly before the end of the decade.

With this contribution and potential in mind we ask that, should you be successful in becoming Prime Minister, you consider UK horticulture in your programme for government.

Specifically, to reduce the regulation burden and cost of doing business to our members, to support UK Growers to be able to import and export as smoothly as possible and to promote urban greening, careers and innovations to supply the UK’s demand of trees and plants. Government and industry together can achieve so much.

I enclose two documents for your reference. which can also be accessed via: 

1) Unlocking Green Growth

2) How the Ornamental Industry underwrites the 25 Year Environmental Plan

Thank you for taking the time to consider our industry now and in the future in what is a crucial time for the UK.

Yours sincerely

James Barnes, Chairman


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