According to vegetable growers in Auckland’s rural south, drought conditions are playing havoc with their operations and will only add to increased prices for consumers. It follows the Ministry of Primary Industries (MPI) declaring the drought a “medium-scale adverse event” in south Auckland and the Waikato on Monday, along with a support package for affected farmers and growers.
Pukekohe vegetable grower Colin Sue says unusually dry conditions over the last couple of years have made it a challenging time for those in the industry and is leading to the high prices consumers are paying.
According to Auckland Council’s Climate Action Framework released in 2019, it generates $327 million a year, which is the equivalent of 26% of NZ’s total domestic value of vegetable production.
Pukekohe Vegetable Growers Association president Kylie Faulkner said the unusually dry conditions have hit the local horticulture industry hard.