Responding to SCOTSS report on labelling of compost bags

by Rachel McQuilliam

Presenting clear, accurate and useful information to consumers about the content of the compost on offer at garden centres is key in helping people make informed choices about their purchases; the horticulture industry is committed to this principle and our members take consumer labelling incredibly seriously. They never knowingly fail to comply with the law on labelling.   

As the coordinators of an industry taskforce working on phasing out peat in bagged compost as early as 2025, the HTA would have been well-placed to assist the Society of Chief Officers of Trading Standards in Scotland (SCOTSS) in understanding how this commitment is being developed into practical action. Disappointingly, they did not engage with us either before embarking upon their research or writing and publishing the report into their findings.  

The HTA provides expert research and data on peat content in compost and consumer attitudes to its use and would have assisted SCOTSS in better understanding the complexities of the industry. We’re seeking a meeting with them to discuss next steps.