New Zealand

Produce may be in short supply as Canterbury floodings disrupt vegetable harvest

Persistent, heavy rain is causing severe flooding in parts of Canterbury. Hundreds of residents have been evacuated from their homes following rising river levels, including the entire town of Springfield in the Selwyn district. Muddy paddocks meant harvest times would be slowed significantly, resulting in less product being sent to distribution centers.

It is too early to know if some crops were going to be water damaged to the point where they couldn’t be harvested and sold. Fertilizer applied to crops before the heavy rain would have been washed away, and more would need to be reapplied in order for the vegetables to grow well.

A Countdown spokeswoman said all of its stores in Canterbury were open and operating as usual. “At the moment we’re not aware of our local growers and farmers in the area being impacted by the rain and flooding, but we’ll be keeping in touch with them to understand if there is any damage and how we can help,” she told

There were some delays of both produce and general deliveries to its Ashburton and Timaru stores due to road closures. It was working with suppliers and transport partners to manage this, she said.

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