The COVID-19 pandemic seems to have contributed to a skyrocketing demand for garlic this season, with local growers among those to benefit.
Peter Yates of Maldon’s Nuggetty Garlic has been growing and selling organic garlic for 10 years at local farmers markets.
He says this year’s demand for the flavoursome bulbs – long recognised for their medicinal immune-boosting properties – has been exceptionally strong.
“We were certainly astonished at how much we were selling as the season wore on,” Peter says.
“Demand usually goes down at the end of the season but it was going up and up.”
Now he says they’ve as good as sold out for this season.
“Pretty much. We’re only small growers. We just produce about half a tonne a year,” he says.
Peter believes the stronger-than-usual demand has been not only due to people’s wish to cook and eat fresh garlic – but also to plant the bulbs with a trend to backyard gardening another of the psychological phenomena seemingly driven by uncertainty associated with the pandemic.
“It’s both,” he says.
Read more in today’s Castlemaine Mail, Friday May 8, 2020.