Welcome to Fresh Perspective
Welcome to the very first edition of Fresh Perspective, Pershouse Produce's own monthly e-newsletter.

Through Fresh Perspective we aim to keep you informed about the going's on at the Markets, introduce you to the Pershouse Team, and also profile our growers and customers.

We would also welcome any contributions, so if you have a story to tell, we'd love to hear it! Please email your story idea and any digital pictures to laura@pershouse.com.au

New Look Pershouse Produce Website
Recently, Pershouse Produce undertook a major upgrade of our web site www.pershouse.com.au.

Now, everything you need to know about Pershouse Produce is just one click away!

“We think that having a bigger presence on the internet will help us to partly bridge the physical distance between our growers and us. The internet is a wonderful communication tool and Pershouse’ has always been proud of how we communicate with our customers’ said Pershouse Produce Joint Managing Director, Peter Kedwell.

“The site is a one-stop shop for information about our company.”

Designed by Bambrick Media, some of the features of the new site include the addition of our e-newsletter, Fresh Perspective, and a downloadable version of our new infomercial which will tell you all about Pershouse Produce at the click of a button.

“We have also included information on the history of the company and contacts and pictures of all our team at Pershouse. It’s nice to be able to put a face to a name or voice on the end of the mobile phone!” said Peter.

The new site will also feature profiles on some of the growers that Pershouse Produce proudly represents, and also those growers who are strategic partners of Pershouse.

“Not only does the site give us an opportunity to promote our growers, but we envisage that growers who are considering Pershouse Produce as a marketing partner, will be confident in their choice to work with us as a result of our impressive, and growing list of profiled growers. This area of our site will continue to be developed.”

Produce buyers too can be confident that they are dealing with a quality company, with lots of depth and experience with the entire website designed to present a company that has truly come of age.

“The design of the website truly reflects the company today – professional and focussed - steeped in history and experience, but with our eyes firmly fixed on the future” said Peter

Of course feedback is a very important part of how Pershouse Produce manages our customer communications and we certainly invite comments and suggestions on ways we might improve the site. Please visit the Contact Us section at www.pershouse.com.au if you would like to contribute.

Make sure you visit us soon.


Bumper Start to Season for Spring Watermelon Growers
According to Pershouse Produce’s Melon Sales Team member, Logan Kedwell, the warmer weather will ensure a terrific start to the season for watermelons.

“It was a much colder winter this year so the demand for watermelons wasn’t as high as we have seen in previous years.

“With the failure of much of the rockmelon crop, there was a bit of product substitution by consumers during the cooler months, but not to the levels of last year.”

Currently, the watermelon supply is in between seasons with the Cunnanurra season finishing, and the North Queensland season about to start.

“With this between season flux, supply has been a little thin, and growers who have been able to supply during this time have capitalised on this seasonal anomaly” said Logan.

And, to add to this consumer demand is also on the rise.

“Now that the weather is warming up, we have started to see a definite spike in the demand for all watermelon varieties. Of course, with there being a short supply, the melon prices are very high and we expect this to continue until the North Queensland melon season gets into full swing”

Rockmelons Set for Better Season
With the new rockmelon crops starting to arrive on the Market, it is expected that the spring/summer growers will fair a little better than their winter counterparts.

The winter season saw an across the board failure of the rockmelon crop, with only lower quality and small size fruit available on the market.

“The crop failure through Winter has been quite devastating for many growers” said Pershouse Produce Rockmelon Sales Manager Rob Thomas.

“The size and sweetness just wasn’t there and the cooler weather didn’t help demand.”

The new crops have started to arrive at the markets and already there are some significant improvements in product quality and the fruit is back to its usual size and sweetness level.

And, already the price differences starting to appear. Since early September there has been some evening out of rockmelon prices as more quality fruit arrives.

‘As the newer crops arrive, there is more quality fruit available and subsequently the prices start to return to expected levels for the season. Any grower who was fortunate enough to be able to supply quality product during this difficult season really did well.” Said Rob.

“We are really looking forward to the product we expect to see at Pershouse in the next few weeks. I have seen what is coming from the farms in North Queensland and the fruit looks really good.”

And, with the weather warming up, consumer demand for all melon varieties is expected to rise which should keep prices buoyant until the new season gets into full swing.

Win a Ute for Xmas!
Calling all growers who supply to a Brisbane Produce Market primary wholesaler – you could be the proud owner of a new Toyota 4x2 Hilux SR cab chassis manual utility this Christmas simply by entering a competition that will help us get to know you better.

Take a look at the Brisbane Produce Market’s Win a Toyota Hilux competition entry form inserted into the current edition of Fresh Source magazine or get online at www.brisbanemarkets.com.au to download a form.

The Toyota is supplied by the Tait Auto Group and is valued at $29,160. It comes with air conditioning and a fitted alloy tray.

Brismark and Brisbane Markets Limited are sponsoring the competition to get to know the growers who are the lifeblood of the industry and to hear the industry issues that are concerning them.

As part of the entry form, growers will be asked four key questions that include what produce they grow, what wholesaler/s they send to, what are the big issues that concern them and what publications they like to read.

The competition is open to any fruit and/or vegetable growers over 18 years of age who supply to a Brisbane Produce Market primary wholesaler.

The questions and details on how to enter are found on the entry form. You have until Monday, 3 December 2007 to get your entries in.

The winner will be drawn from a barrel at 10am, on Wednesday, 5 December 2007 giving you plenty of time to collect the ute in time for Christmas.

For information, check out the competition terms and conditions online at www.brisbanemarkets.com.au, phone the grower hotline on 1800 631 002 or email admin@brisbanemarkets.com.au.


Staff Profile - Dario Vescovi
A passion for customer service and an absolute commitment to getting the best prices for growers is what drives Pershouse’ Vegetable Sales Manager Dario Vescovi to work early every morning after some 35 years in the Brisbane Markets.

“I absolutely love the feeling of having a win for them (the growers). You know, they work so hard and you just want them to be rewarded for all that effort.” said Dario.

And this loyalty is a two-way street with many of the growers that Dario represents being long term customers.

“Some of my growers, like Samwell’s, Lofario’s and Quirk Brothers have been with me for the best part of 35 years. They are like family.”

Dario’s career in produce marketing began at the ripe age of 19 years, when his Dad got him a job at the Brisbane Markets with Tropicana Tomatoes. Coincidently, John Pershouse, David’s father, was Dario’s first employer.

“I grew up on a farm in the Redland’s, just east of Brisbane. Dad wanted me do something more than farming, and got me this job at the Markets. I must have been going alright at it too, because I was pretty quickly given a fair bit of responsibility for my age.

“I remember this one time (while at Tropicana) that I was put in charge while the boss was away. In those days, you could smoke in the workplace, but my boss had made a rule that we couldn’t smoke inside the office.”

“So, of course, I enforced this rule on the office girls ‘cause I wanted to do my job properly and next thing I know the Union was out here and the staff were on strike. The bloody Markets were on strike for 3 days and it was my fault!!”

None of this surprises Dario’s colleagues who are happy to share some funny anecdotes about Dario – most of these not for delicate ears! But one common thread to their stories is that he is a good bloke who loves telling a story and is a terrific salesman.

‘The buyers love him. Some days we don’t know how, but they do” says Graeme Meagher from Pershouse Produce “he can get away with things that we can’t. The most politically incorrect man I know!”

“He isn’t like that at home though – quiet as a mouse we hear”

Dario has been married to Jane for over 35 years and has two sons, Damien and Luke and three grandchildren – “the light’s of my life”.

Outside the Market’s Dario just loves sport, particularly squash and cricket.

As you can imagine, Dario was been witness to enormous changes in the industry.

‘Coldroom’s and cold storage has made such a difference to the industry. The real sense of urgency – the frenzy of the old days isn’t there anymore. Probably stonefruit season is the closest we get to that hyped up atmosphere.

“And mobile phones have made communication so much easier. I do nearly all my business by mobile phone these days”

“The changes have been good for growers. Now they don’t necessarily have to work 7 days like they did before”

And while on the good old days, Dario still fondly remembers the day in 1978, when after a great deal of wet weather, he achieved a price of $120.00 a box for small, red capsicums for a grower in Bundaberg– a fortune by any standards.

“I have never seen a price spike like that, and I probably won’t again. You know, that grower framed the cheque and the invoice for that transaction.”

And Dario, we’re sure it still holds pride of place in that grower’s pool room.

Mango Madness!
Robby Guardala of Fruity Capers Toowong has been crowned Mango King 2007 after paying $15,000 for the season’s symbolic ‘first tray’ of mangoes at the tenth annual Brisbane Markets Mango Auction.

Beneficiaries for the 2007 Brisbane Markets Mango Auction are drug prevention advocates Life Education Queensland, and Redkite (the new name for The Malcolm Sargent Cancer Fund for Children), who provide emotional and financial support to children affected by cancer and their families.

The event has yet again delivered its promise of being a fantastic family day for the Brisbane Markets community, with cooking demonstrations, a Grand Parade and fun-filled activities for the kids.

“Everyone in the Brisbane Markets community looks forward to the Mango Auction and to get behind Redkite and Life Education Queensland.

“It’s a great opportunity to help children and their families,” Robby said.

Robby and his brother and business partner, Freddy won’t be enjoying the tray of golden fruit themselves; rather Robby will deliver the mangoes to the special kids at the Banksia Ward of the Royal Children’s Hospital for them to enjoy.

Brisbane Markets Chief Executive Officer Andrew Young said the morning was a great success and he acknowledged the generosity of Brisbane Markets community.

“The auction is an opportunity for the primary wholesalers in Brisbane Markets, our Fresh Tastes retailers and other members of Brisbane Markets community to get behind these worthy children’s charities.

“Redkite and Life Education Queensland have been the beneficiaries of Brisbane Markets Mango Auction for several years, as these charities are in keeping with Brisbane Markets ethos of healthy choices, healthy living and healthy lifestyle,” Mr Young said.

The Auction, along with donations and raffles, raised more than $40,000, with Haesley Cush from Ray White New Farm auctioneering.

Attendees on the day included MC Joseph May from National Nine News, Life Education Queensland patron Susie O’Neill and members of Queensland Reds.

Some of Brisbane’s most celebrated chefs including David Pugh from Restaurant Two, Brad Jolly from Alchemy Restaurant and Bar, Javier Codina from Gianni’s Restaurant and Marshall Orton from Sofitel Brisbane were on hand to create mouth-watering mango-inspired signature dishes.

This symbolic charity event also heralds the start of the mango season, with the first mangoes now in store and supply increasing over the coming weeks.

Since the inaugural Brisbane Markets Mango Auction in 1998, the event has raised more than $400 000 for charity.

Here is a list of just some of the produce available right now* at Pershouse Produce

Broad beans
Brussel Sprouts
Butter Beans

Honeydew Melon
Kipfler Potatoes

Okra Beans

Spring Onions
Sth Gold Potatoes
Sweet Potatoes

*subject to supply conditions.

If you have a story or article that you think would make a great addition to Fresh Perspective contact;

Laura Koman
Ph: 07 3379 3034
Email: laura@pershouse.com.au

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