Unusual NZ snow won't affect major export crops - FreshFruitPortal.com

Unusual NZ snow won't affect major export crops

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Unusual NZ snow won't affect major export crops

Unusual snow in New Zealand is likely to delay harvesting for several crops but the country's peak horticulture body says it won't have an impact on key exports.

Horticulture New Zealand spokesperson Leigh Catley told www.freshfruitportal.com while the snow in the North Island's south would affect some vegetable crops, apple and kiwifruit harvesting was mostly complete.

"Honestly, all of those (kiwifruit and apples) are pretty much finished - it's more a novelty for the staff to see snow outside our Wellington office," she says.

"Growers are used  to adverse conditions this time of year. I don't know what the effect will be but I assume there could be a hold up in the harvest. On the upside, it might serve a good purpose in killing bugs and other nasties, especially the potato and tomato psyllid which doesn't like the cold.

"Obviously, green vegetables will be affected, so that's your broccoli, beet and lettuce, as it's cold and wet and it's hard to get out there with the tractor, the harvester or anything for that matter."

New Zealand weather agency MetService representative Bob McDavitt, says the icy southerly winds are expected to ease later today.

"While more snow is likely, the end is in sight," he says.

Photo: www.stuff.co.nz

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