Major Australian avocado grower to cut back on hectarage

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Major Australian avocado grower to cut back on hectarage

As the industry recovers from excessive rains following La Niña’s impact in 2022, Australian avocado grower Costa Group plans to sell  some of its avocado farms in order to focus on more profitable crops, The Sydney Morning Herald reports.

Before the industry was hit by rain bombs in October last year, the avocado sector was already suffering from a surplus that heavily impacted prices.

This has caused Costa Group, currently the largest avocado grower in the country, to turn to berries, citrus and exports to China in order to offset the company’s margins, the publication reports.

“We’ve done a major deep-dive into all our farms ... but cutting a long story short, we’ve identified a number of lower-yielding farms which we will probably scale back, or even divest,” Costa Group’s interim chief executive Harry Debney told the publication.

Additionally, the company and other firms in the sector have faced other difficulties. 

The presence of fruit flies on the east coast of Australia has restricted avocado exports to Western Australia, with Queensland and other growing regions unable to ship their products to Asia.

“It needs more will on behalf of our government, and we’ve actually been heartened by the Albanese government’s focus on that for the first time in a number of years. What we need is some government-to- government negotiations to take place in a positive manner,” Debney was quoted as saying.

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