Andrew Fletcher, or ‘Fletch’ as we fondly call him, heads up our Aussie Farmers Direct National Fruit & Vegetable team and hand picks the best fruit and veg for our Aussie Farmers Direct boxes. Autumn brings with it some great colour with its in-season fruit and veg.
Citrus is always big as we move into the cooler months. Where should we look for our Vit-C fix?
The Navel orange season kicks off soon and goes right through until the end of Spring. They are the official eating orange (as opposed to juicing), with lots of sweetness and no seeds. They are also easy to peel, so are perfect for the kids. We source our Navels from the south of the country in the prime citrus growing regions of the Murray Valley, the NSW Riverina district and the Riverland in South Australia.
Mandarin season is also in full swing from April to October. You’ll find the Imperial variety in your Aussie Farmers Direct fruit & veg delivery. These are easy to peel, with very few seeds and have a great sweetness in flavour. The season starts with fruit from Queensland, and moves its way down south to the Riverina. If your mandy is heavy to hold, it means it is packed with juice.
Apart from citrus, what other fruit can we expect to see?
Two of my favourite apple varieties are ripe for the picking. Jazz is a pretty new variety in Australia; we’ve been crunching our way through these tangy, sweet apples for only four or so years. They are a cross between a Gala and a Braeburn and are the perfect small to medium-sized snack. These trees enjoy the summer sun, high rainfall, cool winters and rich soil, so we get them from orchards in Tasmania and New South Wales, with most of our crop coming from South Gippsland in Victoria.
Pink Lady is another apple crossbreed variety – a combination of Golden Delicious and Lady Williams. They have a distinct pink colour, great crunch and are almost slightly fizzy in flavour. They are now one of Australia’s most popular eating apples and they are also a bit of an Aussie success story. Mr Cripps was the Australian that created them in the 1970s, and it’s a variety now grown in over 15 countries.
There are only five or so main growers in Australia who specialise in growing kiwi fruit, also now in season. We source ours from one Australia’s most respected growers, Jamie and John.
What is looking good on the veg front?
There is a lot of great colour in the veg department! Capsicums are in season, with a kaleidoscope of colours available. All capsicums start life green, and change in colour as they ripen. They need lots of warm weather and sun in order to morph into those brilliant reds and yellows. They are great to use in stirfries, to eat raw in seasonal salads, and they roast really well too. They also do well in the freezer – no need to blanche them first, just deseed, slice and store in a zip-lock bag.
Butternut pumpkins are wonderful in Autumn when the first of a new crop becomes available. One of our butternut farming families is a bit unique – learn more about them.
Fletch’s Top 10 Seasonal Favourites
- Apples (Jazz and Pink Lady)
- Butternut Pumpkin
- Cucumbers (Lebanese and Continental)
- Imperial Mandarins
- Kiwi Fruit
- Navel Oranges