$11.50 for a kilogram of broccoli. $8 a bunch for fresh celery. The price of some vegetables in Australia has gone up considerably recently.
These price increases have led many people to take to social media, accusing major supermarkets and independent retailers of profiteering and price gouging at a time of crisis.
However, Shaun Lindhe, the communications manager for peak vegetable growers body AusVeg, suggests that the price increases have more to do with another story, one that has fallen from the headlines in recent weeks: the ongoing, devastating droughts and bushfires that ravaged Australia over the summer.
“There’s been a reduced supply as a result of drought,” Lindhe says. “There’s also seasonal fluctuations in supply, as production regions transition.”
The reduced supply has coincided with panicked shoppers clearing shelves, driving prices even higher.