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Victoria 10-15% down

Australian strawberry season hindered by sunburn and frost

Strawberry growers in Victoria have been feeling the effects of adverse weather this season, according to Sam Violi, President of Australia Strawberries Victoria, some growers have been hit worse than others.

"95% of Victoria's strawberries are grown in the Yarra Valley, volumes are down 10-15%. We had a cold spring and frost which affected the berries, some have also been subject to sunburn. To add to this the American varieties were damaged by rain.

"The growers also had to cope with a lot of wind, we grow our strawberries on the ground with polythene covers, there was a lot of work for the growers repairing and replacing them," explained Violi.

Nevertheless growers are still hopeful of a profitable season. The Victorian strawberry season runs from September until June. The strawberries are grown on 300 hectares and bring in 160-170 million AU$ each season. Victoria grows around a third of all Australian strawberries.

Violi says there is a new strawberry variety coming, the Melba variety, named after Dame Nellie Melba a famous Australian opera singer in Victorian times. This will be better able to tolerate the Australian climate.

For more information:
Sam Violi
Strawberries Australia (Victoria)
Mobile: +61 409 439 122

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