Veg prices tipped to stay put after floods

FAIR GO: Lockyer Valley Growers Association president Michael Sippel believes most fresh produce prices should remain the same.
FAIR GO: Lockyer Valley Growers Association president Michael Sippel believes most fresh produce prices should remain the same. Ali Kuchel

UNLESS Victorian farmers face an extremely wet and cold winter, Michael Sippel believes consumers won't see a ridiculous price hike in most fresh produce.

"We aren't really influenced by what happens in north Queensland because we aren't growing the capsicums, tomatoes and melons, they're summer vegetables as such,” Mr Sippel said.

"In the scheme of things, it probably won't lead to a lack of supply across the whole country because Victoria and other parts of the country will still be supplying.

"In the dead of the winter, the industry does rely on the likes of us in the Lockyer.”

The Lockyer Valley Growers Association president said the growers in the Lockyer were not as affected as the farmers in Bowen.

"The rain did more good than harm in the Valley,” he said.

"It didn't hurt anything in turn. Sure, some areas got affected but the bulk of it was beneficial.”

He did suggest carrot prices could increase due to crop damage in Kalbar, but predicted popular winter vegetables such as broccoli, cauliflower and lettuce would remain relatively the same.

"We could see a three- month delay before the new crops kick in,” he said.

"But I don't think we'll see shortfalls across the brassicas, baby leaf and processing lines.”

Vegetable crops are in full swing in the Lockyer Valley, with ex tropical cyclone Debbie adding much needed moisture to the soil.

Mr Sippel said prior, farmers were more concerned about drought than flooding and now they were in full production.

"Most of the growers are coming into their full-scale production,” he said.

"We're hopeful for a good season and a sustainable price for the growers.”

Topics:  fresh produce fruit and veg horticulture michael sippel

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