Growers reveal when vegetable prices will drop
LOCKYER farmers say extreme vegetable prices should drop in the coming weeks as the salad bowl's winter crops begin harvest.
This week, broccoli averaged $77 for an eight-kilogram packet, with reports of the product selling for upwards of $16/kg at vegetable outlets.
Lake Clarendon vegetable grower Tim Linnan believed within the next two months prices would drop.
"We are a month away from the Lockyer Valley starting its main growing season," Mr Linnan said.
"Once we kick in, those prices will definitely come back."
Mr Linnan said the drought was still impacting vegetable prices, but Australians shouldn't be concerned about fresh produce availability.
"They need to be patient," he said. "People shouldn't panic buy fruit and vegetables because farmers grow plenty each year."
"We don't set the prices, it's a market-driven price, and its only high at the moment because of the lack of supply."
A lack of water on the Darling Downs has turned into a slight positive in the Lockyer Valley for growers who began planting winter vegetable crops earlier.
Lowood farmer Andrew Jackwitz was forced to stop production on his farm in the Darling Downs and chose to start his broccoli crop earlier in the Lockyer Valley.
He planted about a month earlier than normal and began harvesting last week, and said prices were rising about $10/day for the in-demand product.
"We ran out of water on the downs, so we had to bring the plants back here to plant," he said.
However, growers have said their ability to continue producing vegetables this year was thanks to decent rain earlier this year.
Mr Linnan said growers were lucky to get rain.
"The water is nowhere near back to normal, but its going to see us through this season," he said.
"I know a lot of people are worried about having enough water in the future, and now is the time. It shows why it is so important to get renewed water into the Lockyer Valley."
In Lowood, Mr Jackwitz recorded about eight inches at his farm.
"We are still short on water, including the underground," he said.
"We would have to have cut back at our Lowood farm as well if it didn't rain."