Kiwifruit prices hit record in NZ in December

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Kiwifruit prices hit record in NZ in December

Kiwifruit prices hit a record high in December and nearly double the price of a year earlier, Stuff reported.

It sold for an average price of NZ$8.30 (US$5.50) a kilogram last month, up 32% from November.

Stats NZ acting consumer prices manager James Griffin said that price compared to NZ$4.2 per kilogram in December 2018.

But Mark Mayston, a kiwifruit grower from the Bay of Plenty, said the local prices had little impact on his income.

"Kiwifruit grower profitability is driven by prices in the export markets as almost all of the fruit we grow is exported. Changes in the pricing on the domestic market have no impact on my business," Mayston said.

New Zealand Kiwifruit Growers chief executive Nikki Johnson said around 97% of the national crop was exported. Kiwifruit marketer Zespri sent its last shipment to Asia in late-November.

The picking season for kiwifruit runs from March to June and the December sales would have been the last fruit from last year's season. 

The higher prices in December were possibly due to limited supply, she said.

"We did have a lower supply this year than we did the previous year, particularly for green fruit," she was quoted as saying.

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