Heat knocks out popular vegetables

MANGOES and salad ingredients are the bestselling items at your local fruit shop this week but the heat has affected the supply of popular vegetables and fruits firming their prices.

You will be able to pick up value for money beetroot, celery, eggplant, silverbeet, sweet corn and mushrooms, with Asian vegetables and asparagus also value for money but struggling with quality after recent hot conditions.

Cauliflower and sweet potatoes are expensive.

Expect to pay firm prices for beans, brussels sprouts, broccoli, cabbage, capsicum, carrot, fennel, leeks, parsnips, squash, zucchini and potatoes.

Top quality tomatoes are up in price but other salad items, including avocados, lettuce, mixed salad leaf, cucumber and eshallots are reasonably priced.

All fresh herbs are available. To keep them longer, try placing them in the refrigerator covered loosely with a plastic bag or you can snip their stems and transfer them to a large mason jar with about 4cm of water in the bottom, cover the top and then place them in the refrigerator.

The top four mango varieties, kensington pride (also known as the Bowen), R2E2, calypso and honey gold, are being snapped up at reasonable prices.

Cavendish bananas, limes and kiwifruit are the best budget fruits of the week, as well as small sized nectarines and peaches, although the larger ones, along with apricots are plums, are firmly priced. Cherries are expensive and so are figs.

Strawberries are the largest you will find with the Stanthorpe growing conditions conducive to bigger fruit with only four fitting in a punnet in some cases.

There are reports of some as large as a tennis ball. They are firmly priced, as are blueberries and raspberries.

Expect to pay firm prices for melons, pineapples and passionfruit, as well as the more exotic fruits such as pomegranate, (from the USA), dragon fruit and soursop.

Lychees are also available and reasonably priced.

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