Premium Honey Golds arrive in store
It's the news Honey Gold mango fans have been waiting for - the first fruit from Piñata Farms will arrive on East Coast supermarket shelves next week.
Leading Australian fruit producer Piñata Farms began night picking its specialty variety in the Northern Territory on November 2. Despite, a lighter season than usual, Piñata Farms will harvest the premium fruit continuously until March.
General manager tropicals Stephen Scurr said volumes were light across all growing regions due to warmer conditions than required during the crucial flowering period in winter.
"Most Australian mango varieties are affected this season. Honey Gold quality and size are as good as ever and consistent with what consumers have come to expect.
"However, volume is significantly down on last season, and previous average seasons," he said.
"Within the Territory, Darwin’s crop is similar to last season’s, Katherine’s is down a bit and Mataranka’s is up a bit on last year but down a bit overall.
"We just didn't get the consistent cool nights required for good flowering in any mango growing region - and neither did any other grower in northern Australia," he said.
Queensland harvest starts late November
Honey Gold mangoes are produced in the Northern Territory, Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria and Western Australia at Piñata's own farms and that of some 30 contracted growers.
The Queensland harvest is expected to start later this month. Queensland growing regions include Bowen, Giru, Mareeba, Mutchilba, Yeppoon, Benaraby, Yarwun, Rockhampton, Bundaberg, Childers, Mundubbera and Narangba. Queensland growers produce nearly 70 per cent of the entire Honey Gold crop.
A contingent of Vanuatu workers employed under the Seasonal Workers Programme was recruited for the Northern Territory harvest.
Once picked and packed in the Territory, Piñata Farms' mangoes are transported to capital cities for ripening and distribution to leading retail customers throughout Australia.
Honey Golds at a glance
- The Honey Gold variety was founded by the late Noel Sammon in Rockhampton, Central Queensland in the 1990s. It is a cross between a Kensington Pride and an unknown type. The original tree continues to produce a crop.
- As mangoes go, Honey Golds have a small seed-high flesh ratio and the flesh is fibreless.
- Honey Gold mangoes have a yellow-orange, glossy skin and an intense, punchy, distinctive flavour. Their flavour is said to resemble honey, hence their name.