Consumers asked to support vegetable growers devastated by Canterbury hailstorm

Consumers are being asked to put taste and nutrition above the appearance of leafy green vegetables, after a hailstorm which pummelled Canterbury last week.

The storm, which saw hailstones the size of eggs, caused damage to crops across the region.

Central Canterbury vegetable grower Allen Lim said he had been 'wiped out' and stands to lose more than $100,000.  

"I grow around 50 hectares of processed peas and leafy greens, including pak choi, cabbages, spring onions and silverbeet, between Lincoln and Rolleston, all of these crops have been damaged," he said. 

Lim said while some may recover, they're likely to have blemishes on the outer leaves, which most people don't eat anyway. 

"If that's the case, it would be great if consumers could see past appearances and support Canterbury growers by buying these vegetables, as they'll taste the same and be just as good for you."

The silverbeet crop of Central Canterbury vegetable grower Allen Lim was among vegetables damaged by the storm.
The silverbeet crop of Central Canterbury vegetable grower Allen Lim was among vegetables damaged by the storm. Photo credit: Supplied

He said Countdown was still taking his spring onions as are other wholesalers even though it is marked by hail.  

However, his pak choi and silverbeet had sustained too much damage to be of any use.

"I am thankful for this understanding and support, which will lessen the impact of the hail on my business." 

The hailstorm also caused damage to farming crops, with some farmers fearing as much as an 80 percent crop loss.

Vice-chairperson of Federated Farmers, Brian Leadley was among those affected.

"It's been pretty extensive. It's done a lot of damage to a broad range of crops, wheat and barley particularly," he said.

Many of the crops would be exposed to disease, which means farmers may have to invest more money into crops.

"Farmers are feeling really under pressure from a number of different areas within the sector and this just adds to it," Leadley told Newshub.

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