A recent drop in avocado prices may help relieve some of the guilt you feel about splurging on smashed avo on toast at a Sunday brunch when you ought to be saving money.
- Avocado prices in supermarkets are currently as low as $1 each
- Low prices come from a surge in the number of avocados grown this year
- The situation is likely to continue as more growers are deciding to grow the fruit
Peak industry body Avocados Australia’s online retail pricing report has listed the price of an avocado at about $1 each in major supermarket chains across the country.
Chief executive John Tyas said there had been a significant increase in avocado production and supply, pushing prices down.
“Compared with last year, we’re going to [see] … 65 per cent more Australian avocados harvested this year,” he said.
Tough market for growers
While that was great news for consumers, it could mean problems for growers.Tim Keogh, owner of MMM Mangoes and Avocado’s near Rockhampton in Central Queensland, said the increase in supply would hurt growers.
“It’s pretty tough at the moment in terms of price, just because of a huge supply that’s come into the market,” he said.
“This season we’ve probably had the biggest crop we’ve ever had within our trees and I’m sure that’s right across the board.
Mr Tyas said demand for avocados had not quite matched up with the sheer volume of product available this year.
There were, he said, a few factors at play leading to reduced levels of demand:
- The pandemic had led to cafes and restaurants within the major cities periodically going into lockdown
- More people were choosing to eat at home
- There was generally a natural dip in the numbers of avocados consumed during cooler months
“Supply is definitely exceeding demand at the moment,” Mr Tyas said.
“A lot of growers are doing it pretty tough at the moment — the prices have come back, they’re very marginal.”
But, he said, it was not all bad news for growers.
“There’s definitely a lot of pain for individual businesses but, as an industry as a whole, there are some benefits from the current situation as well,” he said.
“So, we’re seeing a real increase in volumes that are going offshore.”
Consumers encouraged to buy
Mr Keogh said growers would need the support of Australian consumers as more and more trees came online.
“It’s probably time for the consumer to get on board and multi-buy while they’re cheap and make the most of it,” he said.
“I think it’s going to be challenging in years to come with the larger supply coming through and that’s going to increase as the years go on.”
Despite the issues with demand, he said, it was clear consumers were still passionate about avocados.
“Our consumption, I believe, is still going up and I think consumption still around the world is increasing,” Mr Keogh said.