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World Cauliflower costs have Kiwis up in arms

01:18  02 april  2020
01:18  02 april  2020 Source:   msn.com

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Complaints that cauliflowers are costing as much as $NZ13 each during New Zealand's shutdown are being investigated by Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern. A government-initiated 'price watch' form set up to get public feedback has revealed the vegetable is the number one issue for Kiwis as they stock up

New Zealanders are complaining about the price of the humble cauliflower , which are now selling for nearly US each AFP/File. Rather than profiteering from soaring demand for facemasks and cleaning products, or even alcohol and cigarettes, Kiwi retailers stand accused of dirty tactics in the

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New Zealanders are complaining about the price of the humble cauliflower , which are now selling for nearly US each LOIC VENANCE AFP/File. Rather than profiteering from soaring demand for facemasks and cleaning products, or even alcohol and cigarettes, Kiwi retailers stand accused of dirty

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Not soap, hand sanitiser, bread or toilet paper.

Instead, it's the humble cauliflower.

A government-initiated 'price watch' form set up to get public feedback has revealed the vegetable is the number one issue for Kiwis as they stock up through the lockdown.

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said in the first day of its operation, 990 submissions were made and one message was coming through loud and clear.

"The most common complaint was ... the high price of cauliflower," Ms Ardern said, struggling to deny her smile at the news.

Cauliflower. © Getty Cauliflower. Kiwis have told the government they've been asked to pay $NZ13 ($A12.65) for a single cauliflower during the lockdown.

"We are taking these complaints seriously," Ms Ardern said.

Supermarkets are on the front line of New Zealand's shutdown, with butchers and greengrocers all shutdown, along with restaurants, which have not even been allowed to offer takeaway or delivery.

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Cauliflowers cost more than Happy Meals, and an avocado sets you back more than a scoop of chips. The rising cost of fruit and vegetables in New Zealand is forcing some families on a budget A single head of cauliflower now costs .99 in Blenheim, although it can be as much as in main centres.

House prices, dental work, cauliflower now saveloys are over-priced! I suggested counselling. After I hung up my ear flapping son, who is 6, in the back seat asked if I was talking about the Jedi Counsel. Kiwis have no constitutional right to bear arms , Court of Appeal rules.

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That's placed a huge burden on the major retailers, which have employed thousands of extra workers to manage the demand.

Around the country, supermarkets have set up lines in their car parks for people to wait for entry.

During peak times, Kiwis are waiting - with a two-metre distance either side of them in line - for up to an hour to head in and buy their goods.

And while the government and eagle-eyed New Zealanders are on high alert for price gouging during the lockdown, industry sources suggest there's little sinister about the cauliflower price.

A relatively hot summer in New Zealand, with little rain on much of North Island's agricultural land, has reduced supply of the Mediterranean favourite.

Ms Ardern said she - and the eagle-eyed Kiwis on the price-watch beat - would remain diligent.

"In some cases, it will simply be an issue of constrained supply, particularly when it comes to produce," she said.

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Dry Pot Cauliflower is a restaurant favorite that we’ve had countless times in China. It’s our vegetable of choice when eating out. You might think it sounds boring, but we discovered that cauliflower can be amazingly delicious with a little spice, saltiness and the addition of pork belly.

"But we are investigating complaints that are made because this is a time when we want to know that New Zealanders are being treated fairly."

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