Consumer demand has been outstripping supply, and in WA packers have reported tray prices of up to A$60, double last year’s price, reported the AAP.
“We’ve never seen prices as high as they are, ever, and I’ve been in the industry for 36 years,” Jennie Franceschi, a southwest WA packer, told the AAP. “There’s not enough to keep everyone happy.”
Peak body Avocados Australia said forecast supplies from the state are down 15 per cent.
In New Zealand, the final export volume for the season looks likely to be down 300,000 trays, according to peak body the New Zealand Avocado Growers Association.
New Zealand has had to cut off exports to Japan and the US because of the shortage of export-quality fruit.
“The storms blemished the fruit and they haven’t been able to meet strict export standards,” Association CEO Alan Thorn said. “Exports to Australia have been reduced a little bit this year.”
Avocados have been reported selling for around A$5 per piece in some areas.
The New Zealand export season has one month left to run, but in Australia picking of the early Shepard variety will begin next month in northern Queensland, and domestic Hass production will hit the market in April.