Popular for mandarins, oranges, grapefruit, lemons and limes, the family-owned Harvey Citrus company has added 5000 avocado trees to their 60ha citrus orchard. The well-known citrus growers in Harvey, Western Australia, are diversifying their businesses and branching out into the avocado industry.
Farm manager and second generation grower Andrew Pergoliti said investing in avocados seemed like a smart move: “We have a packing facility, cool rooms and a picking crew reading to go, so for us it was something extra we could add to the business. The first lot were planted in October last year so we won’t crop until late next year, but so far they are growing well. We are definitely not experts, but when growing our citrus products we put a lot of effort into it ... so we are doing the same with our avocados and hoping we can grow a good product.”
Yambellup Estate owner Richard Eckersley was pleased with the success of his first crop: “The citrus market in WA has matured and we had some surplus land and water and wanted to diversify our business, and we thought why not plant a few avocado trees. We had some great feedback from the first crop which we sold to the independent grocers in Perth, but it will take a few years to perfect them.”