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'The mother likes a prawn cocktail' - Norwich man's desperate plea for iceberg lettuce ahead of 90th birthday buffet

PUBLISHED: 14:16 03 February 2017 | UPDATED: 08:44 04 February 2017

Ray and Pam appeared on Nick Conrad's breakfast show on BBC Radio Norfolk after being rationed for iceberg lettuce in Tescos.

Ray and Pam appeared on Nick Conrad's breakfast show on BBC Radio Norfolk after being rationed for iceberg lettuce in Tescos.

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A Norwich man is sending out an SOS (save our salad) after his wife was limited to just three lettuces following an EU vegetable shortage, putting his mother's birthday buffet on Saturday into turmoil.

Empty iceberg lettuce shelves at a Tesco store (Picture: PA)Empty iceberg lettuce shelves at a Tesco store (Picture: PA)

In the BBC Radio Norfolk clip host Nick Conrad speaks to Ray, whose mother ‘likes a prawn cocktail’ and whose wife Pam has been targeted by a lettuce disaster of Titanic proportions at the Harford Bridge Tescos on Ipswich Road.

Despite advising his other half to branch out to other supermarkets to ensure the birthday buffet goes to plan, Pam “doesn’t go to Sainsbury’s” which has proven the tip of the iceberg for the pair.

The people of Norfolk are being urged to donate a lettuce to Ray and Pam by calling Radio Norfolk on 01603 617321.

Lettuce has become the latest staple to fall victim to the European vegetable shortage Lettuce has become the latest staple to fall victim to the European vegetable shortage "crisis" (Picture: PA)

Supermarkets have rationed the number of lettuces each customer can purchase in stores and iceberg, sweet gem and romaine varieties have been taken off sale completely by some online.

The latest eggplant in the face in the European vegetable shortage, follows similar reductions in the supply of courgettes, salad peppers, brocolli and cabbage.

An extreme mix of drought followed by flooding and freezing conditions has severely affected growers in southern Spain, while poor conditions have also hit farmers in Italy, Greece and Turkey.

Experts have warned that if the weather does not improve in the coming weeks the problem may continue until April, with customers hit by price rises.

London retail analyst Rob Gregory posted a photo on Twitter of empty boxes in a Tesco and a sign that read: “Due to continued weather problems in Spain, there is a shortage on Iceberg and other varied lettuce products.

“To protect the availability for all customers, we are limiting bulk purchases to three per person.”

Sarah Morton, from Manchester, tweeted a photo of a Morrisons shelf label stating customers could only buy a maximum of two each.

She wrote: “Why? I don’t get it @Morrisons £arewerunningout.. £lettuce & £HOWMUCH££”

Supermarkets have been forced to look as far afield as the US west coast - more than 5,300 miles from Britain - to meet demand.

Have you been affected by the #lettucecrisis? Tweet us @EDP24

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