26 Jun 2012

NZ growers keep apples out of Aust market

3:09 pm on 26 June 2012

Initial trans-Tasman shipments of New Zealand apples nearly a year ago have not been followed-up this season - no apples have been exported to Australia so far this year.

Pipfruit New Zealand says that is because prices across the Tasman are so weak.

New Zealand apple growers battled to overturn trade and biosecurity barriers to get access to Australia, after a 90-year ban.

But Pipfruit New Zealand's former special projects manager Peter Beaven told the ABC that New Zealand does not want to supply the Australian market when prices there are low.

Apple and Pear Australia spokesman Jon Durham says that the Australian market is depressed by a big carry-over of fruit from last season.

Coles supermarkets have been selling Golden Delicious apples at 98 cents a kilogram, which he says is less than half the price of production.

Mr Durham expects New Zealand apples will be shipped to Australia when the market lifts.