The Aldi supermarket chain has withdrawn two types of plant from sale because they are included in the Spanish catalogue of toxic invasive species, says the FACUA-Consumidores en Acción consumer association.
The shrubs in question are labelled as the Gardenline 'Mariposa Buddleja' and 'Florece abundantemente Polygonum aubertii'. Aldi says they “do not comply with defined quality standards”. The EAN code for both items is 2004060016702, and Aldi is asking anyone who has bought the plants to return them to any of its stores and they will be given a refund. Customers can also contact Aldi via email firstname.lastname@example.org or telephone 900 902 466.
The Ministry for Ecological Transition and Demographic Challenge says the Spanish catalogue of toxic invasive species includes “all species and subspecies which do or can pose a serious threat for native species, habitats or ecosystems or for economic resources associated with the use of natural heritage”. It says these exotic invasive species are one of the main causes of loss of biodiversity in the world.
In the case of the products that Aldi was selling, the Mariposa Buddleja, whose scientific name is 'Buddleja davidii', is native to Tibet and central China. It grows fast and vigorously and competes with and displaces native species, especially riverside vegetation, and interferes with the pollination of native species, mainly by lepidopteran insects. Its main entry route is as an ornamental species but, once introduced, it expands naturally by seed dispersal.
The 'Florece abundantemente Polygonum aubertii', with the scientific name Fallopia baldschuanica, is also known as Tibetan vine. It is a climbing plant that “competes advantageously with native vegetation,” according to the catalogue, displacing it and impeding its regeneration. It also has a detrimental effect on native fauna which are not prepared to use this plant.