Good season ahead for tomatoes

TOMATO prices are expected to stay strong and rise slightly this season, with a little less fruit on the market after more than five million seedlings were deliberately poisoned at Bowen in July.

SP Exports spokesman Kevin Philip said the company sent about 150,000 seedlings to Bowen to fill the gap left by the poisoned plants.

“It has plateaued our (Bundaberg) supply, so the spring season won't be as early as it is usually,” Mr Philip said.

“It will be early October instead of mid-September.”

He said the market would not reach record prices, but he expected good returns due to the slightly lower volume of fruit.

The wet weather could prove a boon to the tomato season.

“We had about five inches (12cm) a month ago, so the seedlings are weather tolerant and they're doing well,” Mr Philip said.

“It's great for the young crops — there's nothing like it. Irrigation doesn't compare to a good rainfall.”

He said the deluge would help get the ground ready for upcoming plantings.

“It should definitely increase yields,” he said.



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