Hon Ken Baston MLC

Hon Ken Baston MLC

Former Minister for Agriculture and Food; Fisheries

    Summer season opens with Gascoyne grapes

    16/12/2015 8:00 AM
    • Carnarvon table grapes on shop shelves in time for summer
    • Gascoyne growers make steady recovery from ex-TC Olwyn
    • WA table grape season runs until early autumn 

    Consumers can enjoy tasty Western Australian table grapes just in time for summer, with grapes from the Gascoyne region now on shop shelves to mark the start of the local season.


    Agriculture and Food Minister Ken Baston said the return of Carnarvon table grapes marked a steady recovery by growers after ex-Severe Tropical Cyclone Olwyn swept through plantations and caused widespread destruction in March.


    "It has been a challenging year for the region's fruit and vegetable growers, who have undergone a significant recovery period after the cyclone damaged crops and infrastructure," Mr Baston said.


    "Impacted producers were able to apply for grants to assist clean-up and immediate restoration costs under joint Commonwealth-State Natural Disaster Relief and Recovery Arrangements.


    "About $2.6 million has been provided to more than 125 eligible applicants, providing important support to growers."


    Carnarvon grapes have kicked off the Western Australian season which will be followed by produce from the Mid-West, Swan Valley and the South-West.


    The Minister said the State's table grape industry was continuously looking at new seedless varieties which offered a unique eating experience for consumers.


    "Traditional and new red, white and black seedless varieties will be seen in supermarkets and fresh produce stores this season," Mr Baston said.


    "WA growers are on track to deliver good quantities of high-quality grapes this season."


    The table grape industry, in conjunction with the Department of Agriculture and Food, has implemented legislated minimum standards of maturity for all table grapes sold in Western Australia, to ensure consumer satisfaction and encourage repeat sales.


    The department's Buy West Eat Best program works closely with the Gascoyne Food Council to profile Gascoyne produce.


    Fact File

    • Table grapes are grown commercially from Carnarvon in the Gascoyne, the Mid-West near Geraldton, the Swan Valley and the South-West from Pinjarra to Busselton
    • Western Australia's table grape industry produced 5,700 tonnes in 2014
    • For more information, visit http://www.buywesteatbest.org.au

    Minister's office - 6552 5400