Increasing demand for avocados and a current shortage of the fruit has seen prices soar this season. A cold spring at flower time and heavy crop the year before caused some orchards to have a smaller crop this year. Overall supply volumes are down by about 40% compared to last season.
Demand both in New Zealand and export markets is increasing and in small crop years supply can be tight due to high demand.
Figures released by New Zealand Avocado – the growers’ association and industry council – showed 90,000 more Kiwi households were buying the fruit, compared to previous seasons. The high demand saw prices in supermarkets fluctuate throughout the season – selling at up to $2.99 or slightly higher per fruit.
In previous years, a large crop nationwide led to prices dropping to as low as $0.50 a fruit.
In Australia, prices for an avocado shot up to A$7 ($7.50) in some areas, as poor weather and bush fires also resulted in a very low crop across the Tasman.