The Australian melon industry is calling for a stop to the media scaremongering of consumers about the current price of watermelon. In recent days watermelon prices have been portrayed as ‘skyrocketing’, ‘expensive’ and ‘price surge’ in Australia, which is factually incorrect.
“The pricing on the retail shelves at present of $3.90 to $4.50 per kilogram as a retail price for watermelon over the past 5-10 years is not uncommon. There has been no increase, no ‘skyrocketing’ regardless of the continued increase in costs borne by Australian melon growers. We see some minor reductions in price when supply is stronger over summer, but current prices are not out of the ordinary,” says Johnathon Davey, Executive Officer of Melons Australia.
The fact is, at $4/kg for watermelon still equates to 40 cents per 100 gram serving which means buying a piece of cut watermelon is still cheaper than an ice cream or a daily cup of coffee. These prices have not changed for many years.
Mr Davey noted, “The reality is that the vast majority of watermelon sold to consumers across Australia is sold in the cut form and advertised at a per kilogram price. When watermelon is randomly advertised as a whole melon costing $35 per piece, this represents 8-9kg of watermelon and still within the average price range. The simple fact is that there has been no ‘price surge’ or ‘skyrocketing’ and this had clearly not been fact checked before printing/posting.”
As the peak industry body for the Australian melon industry, Melons Australia is noting that the time has passed for cheap prices. Mr Davey said, “Current prices are unsustainable for almost all of our Australia melon producers, who continue to face increased compliance regimes, increased input costs, increased wage costs and increased shipping costs to name a few.”
Why should a serving of a good, Australian grown melon be worth less than a cup of coffee? Melons present a healthy, great value option for Australian consumers, and should be celebrated as 100 per cent of melons consumed in Australia are grown right here in Australia.