Farmers welcome cold snap
FARMERS have welcomed this week’s cold snap because it will slow down fruit and vegetable production, helping to clear a glut in the market.
Giru farmer Peter Le Feuvre said winter had been unusually warm and good growing conditions had caused an oversupply of fruit and vegetables across Queensland, with the glut leading to lower prices for farmers.
Mr Le Feuvre ( pictured) harvests about 100ha of zucchinis between May and September and in recent weeks has not broken even.
“We’re getting between $ 10 and $ 20 a box, which is not recovering our growing cost. By the end of the week I’m hoping demand will pick up and we’ll get at least $ 25 a box,” he said.
Mr Le Feuvre said that while warm weeks had sped up horticulture production in the tropics, the biggest impact had come from the southeast.
“There’s been much more produce coming out of the Bundaberg area than usual,” he said. “These guys plant big areas because they have to allow for colder winters and possible frosts, so when they get a run of warm weeks production spikes.”
Bowen Gumlu Growers Association president Carl Walker said warmer temperatures had caused all crop lines to grow too well and too fast.
“All the southern areas have had gorgeous weather and that creates that oversupply,” Mr Walker said.
“The best thing that could happen to us is if all areas of Queensland had below- average cold weather to slow everything down. That’ll give the market a chance to clear.”