18 MARCH 2008

At 9am sharp Monday morning the doors of possibly the most exclusive grocers in Britain opened for business. Highgrove, the Prince of Wales' new store in the Gloucester town of Tetbury, began what is expected to be a brisk trade in organic goods and gifts.

All the products come from the Prince's nearby Highgrove estate or are brands he uses, and proceeds from sales will go to charities he supports. Charles, accompanied by his wife, the Duchess of Cornwall, was there to welcome the first shoppers to the tastefully decorated premises.

Every detail, from the bare stone walls lined with farming implements to the wooden shelving and terracotta tiles, has been approved by the Prince, who is determined the business reflect his eco-friendly ethos.

On offer are seasonal vegetables freshly harvested from Highgrove's home farm as well as apples from Camilla's orchards. Carrots and leeks go for around £1.20 a kilo while Charles' favourite soap, an import from Lebanon, retails at £6 a bar.

At the more expensive end of the scale is a gilt-edged porcelain vase for £395, commemorating the Prince's approaching 60th birthday. Also on offer is chinaware designed by Samantha Buckley, a student at the Prince's School of Traditional Arts, and some of Charles' own watercolours.

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The new venture, formally opened by the Prince and his wife on Monday, will stock Highgrove honey and chocolate as well as organic vegetablesPhoto: © Rex
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Charles' interest in the environment and country living are apparent in every aspect of the store's decorPhoto: © Rex
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Produce like these daffodils, picked on the royal estate, will be sold in brown paper bags embossed with the Prince's feather emblemPhoto: © Rex