Sales of immature avos prohibited

Avocado growers have been warned to ensure that avocados are properly matured before harvesting, as the sale of immature avocados is now prohibited, said the Subtropical Growers Association (Subtrop).

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Immature avocados do not ripen properly and their sale is prohibited in terms of the Agricultural Product Standards Act as of 1 January 2014. Inspectors from the department of agriculture will test the maturity of early season avocados on national fresh produce markets.

In the past, immature avocados were sold as ‘lowest grade’.

“There’s been a problem for many years with growers picking immature avocados to exploit high early season prices. The problem with this is that the consumer buys a fruit which doesn’t ripen properly. Apart from being unethical, sale of immature fruit damages consumer confidence in avocados,” said Subtrop CEO Derek Donkin.

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For the cultivar Fuerte, fruit moisture content must be 80% or less. For further information on maturity testing, contact Subtrop at 015 307 3676.