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Shoppers don’t ‘beet’ around

Farmer and Sun greengrocer owner Trena Waugh believes the freshest fruit and vegetables are sourced locally.
Farmer and Sun greengrocer owner Trena Waugh believes the freshest fruit and vegetables are sourced locally. Tanya Easterby

AUSVEG market research showing more consumers are spending their money with greengrocers is music to the ears of Gympie's Trena Waugh.

Ms Waugh owns Farmer and Sun at the Southside Town Centre and said the news was encouraging.

The consumer research was conducted in October and involved 580 participants.

An increase was observed in four vegetable products (French and runner beans, carrots, pumpkins and cauliflowers) purchased from specialist retailers compared with five months ago.

Overall, AUSVEG says around 40% of the Australian population chooses to buy these four vegetables from outlets such as greengrocers.

Ms Waugh said her store had only been open for 12 months so she was yet to get a sense of Gympie trends but welcomed the study's findings.

"I think it is important people think local," she said. "Deciding to purchase locally helps keeps jobs in the store and out on the local farm."

Ms Waugh said shoppers would also taste the difference.

"Our produce keeps for longer because it goes immediately on the shelves and is picked that day.

"In supermarkets, the produce can be up to a week old before it gets on the shelf.

AUSVEG is Australia's leading horticulture body representing some 9000 vegetable and potato growers.

"As more data becomes available from the surveys, it will be interesting to see if this trend with Australian consumers continues or if the increase in specialist retailer popularity is related to seasonal or other shopper patterns," AUSVEG manager of industry development and communications Andrew White said.

Topics:  ausveg produce vegetables

Gympie Times