Under the terms of the Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board Order, growers are required to pay a levy if they grow horticultural products (specified in the Order below), sell products grown by them, or anything derived from such products grown by them, and have adjusted sales figures from these products or derivatives of £60,000 or more (in any year ending March 31).
Horticultural products covered by the AHDB Order include vegetables grown in the open (except potatoes where separate arrangements apply), fruit, flowers and bulbs, hardy and other nursery stock, protected crops and herbs. Mushrooms are also included, but pay on a different basis (see below). Full details are provided in the Order.
The rate of the levy is set annually, with the approval of the Minister, up to a maximum of 0.6% (currently 0.5%) of the adjusted sales for all growers except mushrooms.
Mushroom growers will be required to pay a levy if they buy more than 700 litres of mushroom spawn in any year ending March 31. This will apply to spawn purchased either separately or incorporated into compost. The maximum levy rates allowed are 20p per litre for Agaricus (currently 8p) and 8p per litre for non-Agaricus (exotic) mushrooms (currently 2p).