Lychee-mania as buyers rush to snap up grower’s entire crop
THE Far North's lychee season has sparked a frenzy from consumers desperate to get their hands on the produce.
Some growers across the region have just started picking their crops, while others will start harvesting in the coming weeks.
The 2019-20 Lychee Annual Report says 99 per cent of Australia's lychee production takes place in Queensland and is now valued at $34.4m.
Angela Nason from Tablelands To Tabletop works with more than 40 growers in the region across various crops to supply boxes of fresh seasonal produce to locals each week.
This week she connected with a lychee grower at Koah and put a call out on social media for anyone interested in buying the fruit.
The response was phenomenal, she said, with enough interest to buy the entire crop - about 1000kg of TaiSo variety lychees.
"I thought maybe 100 or so people would be interested but I think we're nearing 500, maybe more," Mrs Nason said.
"A lot of our farmers send their lychees south so we don't get a lot of local produce here, so I think when people heard there would be local lychees available they jumped on it."
Mrs Nason will open up her website for lychee orders in the coming weeks as the crop is picked and packed.
"It will be first in, best dressed," she said.
"We literally have three weeks of lychees for the entire year. There's one little window that we get to enjoy the local produce and God they're good."
At Rusty's Markets in Cairns, the first summer crop of lychees have come in.
Nature's Best stallholder Khou Yang said most of their lychees were coming from Mareeba, where there had been a lot of fruit on the trees.
"We get a very high demand for lychees from tourists because it's a tropical fruit," she said.
"It's one more reason why we're hoping to get more people when the borders reopen, because we have a lot of supply to meet demand."
Originally published as Lychee-mania as buyers rush to snap up grower's entire crop