The Ornamental Horticulture Roundtable Action Plan has been launched at the houses of parliament. Hosted by Baroness Royall of Blaisdon the event brought together Defra Minister George Eustice MP, as well as representatives from across the horticultural sector.
The plan is the result of collaboration between industry experts, a process which was facilitated by Defra. It identifies 12 priority areas to help encourage long-term growth, including an international garden expo to help showcase UK horticulture and modernisation of the supply chain.
Other initiatives mentioned in the plan include:
? Gardening considered as a treatment on the NHS
? Public bodies and publicly-funded works and projects to use UK plants
? Introduction of a higher level of horticultural apprenticeship to addresses skills shortages.
Speaking of the plan, chief executive of the Horticultural Trades Association Carol Paris said: ?The future is bright, and I believe we are entering a golden age for the horticulture industry.
?By taking horticulture into the realms of health, environmental and societal benefits we are developing new markets and skills as well as tackling some of the biggest national and global problems we face. We have never seen lasting collaboration on this scale before, and it is definitely starting to bear fruit.?