Ending the retail sale of peat in horticulture in England and Wales

Closed 18 Mar 2022

Opened 18 Dec 2021

Feedback updated 30 Aug 2022

We asked

The consultation focused on opinions on the sale of peat for horticultural use and whether this should continue or be restricted. We also asked whether there should be any exemptions and what these might be.

You said

The response was clear with over 95% of responses calling for a ban on the sale of peat. There was some valid concern in the responses for the use of peat in industry.

We did

The government in England is committed to banning the sale of peat and peat containing products by 2024.

Results updated 30 Aug 2022

The consultation response was published on the 27 August 2022 in English and Welsh. 

The consultation received more than 5,000 responses with over 95% in favour of government taking action to ban retail peat sales. The Government has also pledged to continue to work closely with the professional horticulture sector on speeding up their transition to peat-free alternatives ahead of a ban for the professional horticulture sector, recognising that the professional horticulture sector faces additional technical barriers that will take longer to overcome.



We want to know what you think about our proposed measures to end the retail sale of peat in England and Wales. 

Peatlands are an iconic feature of our landscapes and the UK’s largest stores of carbon. They also provide vital ecosystem services including supplying UK drinking water, decreasing flood risk, and providing food and shelter for rare wildlife. 

The extraction of peat releases the carbon stored inside as carbon dioxide, contributing to climate change. Peat is extracted in the UK for, primarily, horticultural purposes. By ending the retail sale of peat in horticulture, we will be protecting our vulnerable peatlands and helping to prevent climate change. 

We need your views on:

  • Measures to end the use of peat and peat containing products in retail horticulture.
  • Views on each of the proposed measures and how they could operate.
  • Any evidence you can provide on the impacts of ending the use of peat and peat containing products in the professional horticulture and wider sectors. 


Please respond to this consultation in one of the following ways:

Online using the Citizen Space consultation hub at Defra https://consult.defra.gov.uk/

For ease of analysis, responses via the Citizen Space platform would be preferred, but alternative options are provided below if required:

By email: horticultural.peat@defra.gov.uk

In writing to:

Peat in horticulture consultation 

Soils and Peatlands team 

Area SE

2 Marsham Street




If you are responding in Welsh, please respond by email or written response. 

This consultation will run for 12 weeks. This is in line with the Cabinet Office’s ‘Consultation Principles’ which advises Government departments to adopt proportionate consultation procedures. The consultation opens on 18th December 2021. The consultation closes on 18th March 2022. 

Please note, any responses sent by post must have arrived at the above address by the closing date of the consultation (18th March 2022) to be counted. Unfortunately, any responses received after this date will not be analysed. To ensure your response is included in the analysis, please consider responding online via Citizen Space.

What happens next

The Government aims to publish a summary of responses within 12 weeks of the consultation closing.


  • Environmental campaigners
  • Environmental professional services
  • Member of the General Public
  • Landowners and their representative bodies
  • Horticulture Industry
  • Professional and Membership Organisations/Agencies
  • Stakeholders


  • Natural environment
  • Plants
  • Climate change
  • Soil