Mangoes bonanza

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MANGOES could hit supermarket shelves earlier than expected with trees experiencing an early spurt.

Territory farmers say a record long wet season has triggered the biggest flowering the Top End has ever seen.

But industry figures were cautious about making exact predictions.

The bulk of mangoes is expected to reach the market in early August.

Berry Springs fruit packing shed We Pack owner Tim Elliot is processing a small amount of fruit from Berry Springs and Lambells Lagoon.

“The signs are there of a big crop but I’m dubious,” he said.

“With the cold weather it’s hard to say if it will set the crop back.

“It’s a big flowering – one of the biggest we’ve had – but there’s a lot of fruit drop happening. Fruit drop is where trees shed flowers.

Mr Elliot was careful about making supply predictions that could affect market value.

“The good thing is bananas are dear,” he said. “We are concerned about cold weather down south. People don’t seem to eat tropical fruits in the cold.

“In sunny weather people want stone fruit.

“The markets are also very quiet.”

Jabiru grower Murray Linton said mid-July was not the earliest for a mango harvest – but it was close.

He said the cold weather was not doing any harm but the fruit was developing slower than normal.

“The heavy wet put more stress on the trees,” he said. The bulk harvest is expected between August 4 and 10.


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