Packham Pears

The winter produce season is well underway with excellent supplies of most fruits and vegetables.

Citrus are one of the top performers with lemons, limes and mandarins all great buying. Navel oranges are arriving from South Australia — store in the fruit bowl for up to two weeks or extend their life in the fridge.

All apple varieties continue to be widely available, while Hass avocados, passionfruit, pineapple, watermelon, star fruit and raspberries are all in good supply. Sunshine Coast strawberries are starting to appear on our shelves and volumes will increase over the coming weeks. Packham pears are great value, while nashi, pomegranates and pawpaw supplies are moderate.

Rockmelon and blueberries are short supply and the plum season has ended. You can still pick up the last of the custard apples, but they won’t be around for much longer. Grapes are nearing the end of their run, which has been longer than expected due to the warm, dry summer.

There is a terrific range of well-priced vegetables include rocket, radish, kale, spinach and sweet potatoes. Look out for winter favourites like fennel and cauliflower, and snow peas and sugar snap peas from Bundaberg are great value — they’re a versatile addition to stir-fries and salads.

There are good supplies of Asian vegetables, asparagus, beans, brussels sprouts, cabbage, celery, wombok, eggplant, lettuce, mushroom, okra, salad leaves, silverbeet, zucchini and potatoes. Maximize flavour in your cooking with garlic, ginger, herbs, onions, shallots and spring onions.

Keen to experiment? Try adding white or purple kohlrabi (think of cabbage crossed with broccoli) to soups, gratins, roast and stews — ask your local store if you can’t find it.

Supplies of leeks and broccoli are low, while capsicum, corn and tomatoes are available but not abundant.

This week’s top pick is the Packham pear, an Australian-born and bred variety. Look for firm, fragrant fruit, and store at room temperature until ripe. Once Packhams have turned yellow, store in the fridge for up to four days. For a classic winter dessert, poach peeled and cored Packham pears with red wine, caster sugar, cinnamon, vanilla and star anise. Use them in savory dishes like salads with blue cheese and walnuts, or roast with balsamic vinegar and serve alongside baked ricotta.

For A Better Choice ( of what this season has to offer, look for Your Local Fruit Shop. Go to to locate your closest store. Check out the Your Local Fruit Shop Facebook page for the latest news from your local fresh produce experts at

For further information, please contact Elise Parups, Communications and Programs Manager, Brismark on 07 3915 4311 or via email [email protected]

About A Better Choice / Your Local Fruit Shop

Your Local Fruit Shop owners are hardworking, local family business people, who are passionate about fruit and vegetables providing excellent customer service and are experts in their field. And here’s the thing…no one can match ‘Your Local Fruit Shop’ for FRESH!

Every morning your local fruit shop selects high quality fresh fruit and vegetables from the Brisbane Produce Market. Find your local fruit and veg shop throughout South East Queensland including Brisbane, Ipswich, Sunshine Coast, Gold Coast, Tweed Heads, Toowoomba, Gympie and Townsville, please click on the link to find your local fruit shop

The A Better Choice program is a national initiative supporting over 500 independent retailers and wholesalers across the country who supply more than half of Australia’s fresh produce each year. Buying local is giving back – lending a hand to the young family who runs your local fruit store or supporting a third-generation farmer to get back on their feet.