1. ITV Report

Weather brings bumper apple crop

A mild spring and lots of sunshine has meant the apple season has arrived nearly a month early. Orchards around the region are already picking early croppers like Discovery and Bramley and say the fruit is crunchy and full of taste.

"It's been a good year for the apples so far. It's very much caught me by surprise, I haven't finished selling my strawberries and rasberries and suddenly we're into apples and I have to sort out the cider and the places where all the apples go to. It's probably a good month earlier than last year"

– Charlotte Gurney, White House Farm

We grow around 2300 varieties of apple in the UK and the biggest seller is the Gala. However, 70% of the apples we buy are imported and 80% of those we do grow are sent to supermarkets.

Growers say we should try to eat locally and seasonally if at all possible.

"I do get angry when I go into supermarkets and, certainly in peak times, I'm seeing apples from Chile, France, Italy, South Africa when we have everything here. And what we want to do is to let the public know that fresh apples is exactly that. They taste differently, they're not gassed, they're not kept in long term storage and it's all about eating seasonally "

– Susan Hall, Drove Orchard

Despite the fact that Britain produces some of the best known varieties, we eat fewer apples, per head, than any other country in Europe.