Produce prices likely to skyrocket as big dry continues

Shoppers could be hit in the pocket as the tinder-dry conditions across the country start to badly affect crops.

There has been a lack of rain in many regions, and water restrictions also put in place.

Horticulture New Zealand chief executive Mike Chapman told Magic Talk's Rural Exchange that many growers are in a tough position.

"For vegetables you do need water, and it's not just about this season," he said

"What's happening around the country  where there are dry conditions is that the planting of vegetables has become really awkward.

"You can't plant unless you have water, and you have to keep water on them for them to grow successfully."

He said some growers aren't planting, which will affect their winter crop and livelihood.

"The there are the apple and kiwifruit crops - you have to keep water on trees and vines."

He said it had the potential to send prices skyrocketing.

"It has to - it's supply and demand."

He said growers fore domestic get the prices they can from supermarket chains, but if there is not much produce the prices tend to go up.

"There just won't be the volume of supply we need, but for the want of some water harvesting there would be."

Watch the full interview with Mike Chapman.

Rural Exchange with Hamish McKay and Richard Loe, 6-8am Saturday and Sunday on Magic Talk with Carter's Tyre Service.