AU: Christmas fruit and berries ‘decimated’ by extreme storms in Victoria
Farms in Orange, New South Wales, and Yarra Valley, Victoria, were very heavily impacted following the extreme weather over the weekend. According to thenewdaily.com, about half of the crops of Christmas fruit in those regions were destroyed by the storms.
The timing was awful, as many Australian farmers’ crops such as cherries, peaches and apricots, strawberries, raspberries and blackberries were ripening in the weeks leading up to Christmas. As these crops were severely damaged, shoppers can expect an increase in fruit prices.
Australia’s unpredictable weather has led to an industry shift towards protected means of cropping such as hot houses. This year was really troubled, first by from extreme heat, then extreme wet. Cherries and berries, forecast to be an abundant crop, are now decimated. Some growers had only 50 percent of the cherry crop left. However, there are enough cherry orchards, so there will still be plenty of cherries for Christmas.