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For Peat’s Sake campaign launched by Garden Organic

By 23 October 2019June 16th, 2022No Comments

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Garden Organic have launched a new campaign which aims to end the use of peat in horticulture.

To date over 95% of the UK’s peat bogs have been degraded or lost. This wipes out ecosystems – including wild areas that are home to plants, birds and insects, and also increases carbon emissions.

To find out about why it’s important to keep peat in the ground and what you can use instead of peat compost, click here.

The horticultural industry has done little to nothing about keeping peat in the ground and they have delayed finding peat alternatives they also claim there is no public demand for it.

As part of the campaign Garden organic will be lobbying Defra to make their voluntary reduction targets mandatory.

There are 5 ways you can join and support the For Peat’s Sake campaign:

  1. Go peat-free in your own growing

  2. Share Garden’ Organic’s campaign messages in your local community

  3. Ask your local garden centre if they sell peat-free plants and bagged compost. If not, why not? Hand them a letter asking that they stock peat-free. Here’s a suggested copy for you to download.

  4. Write to your local MP and DEFRA.

  5. Donate to the For Peat’s Sake campaign.

Find out more about joining the campaign click here.

This is the long history of failed peat reduction:

  • 1960s The UKs peat extraction for horticulture started on a commercial scale

  • 1970s Conservationist David Bellamy raised the issue of peat bog damage

  • 1990 A consortium of 14 leading wildlife and archaeological conservation organisations launched the Peatlands Campaign to emphasise the damage caused by peat-based industries, and to promote the use of alternatives.

  • 1999 The UK Biodiversity Action Plan said 90% of the UK growing-media/soil improvers market should be peat-free by 2010, but the industry failed to meet the target.

  • 2011 A natural environment white paper proposed ending the use of peat in England in the garden and hobby market by 2020, and the commercial horticulture sector by 2030. Garden Organic launched the I Don’t Dig Peat campaign, generating significant public awareness around the issue and pushing for change. A Sustainable Growing Media Task Force was set up with a target of getting results by 2015.

  • 2015 The target was missed.

  • 2019 A revised deadline was created for end of this year. Garden Organic launches a second campaign in order to keep pressure on the industry.