(Updated coverage Sept. 10) Frost in New Zealand won’t likely affect supplies of kiwifruit.

Temperatures Sept. 5-6 got as low as 25-28 degrees in some areas of the Waikato, Coromandel, South Auckland, Kati Kati and Te Puke growing regions, said Karen Brux, North American marketing representative for Zespri International, Tauranga, New Zealand, the exclusive marketer of New Zealand kiwifruit exported to North America.

"Approximately 20-30 orchards have been affected in varying degrees," Brux said. "The bud burst in gold fruit is earlier than green, so the frost has only had an impact on gold."

But given that msot orchards had frost protection systems in place at the time of the freeze, the effect on gold volumes should be minimal, Brux said.

Many New Zealand growers use helicopters, fans and sprinklers to keep kiwifruit from freezing.


New Zealand kiwifruit is typically sold in the U.S. from about May to about October.