When your green grocer has over 20 years industry experience, you know he knows a thing or two about fresh produce. Luke Clasie, manager of Lamberts Fresh Produce talks us through what is ripe and ready this season.
Rockmelon, honeydew, beans, corn, capsicum, rambutan, mangosteen, dragonfruit, tomatoes, avocadoes, potatoes, onions, bananas, pineapples, zucchini, squash, eschallots, cabbage, paw paw, passionfruit, pumpkin, Asian vegies, herbs and much, much more are all coming direct to Lamberts Fresh Produce from local producers and farms from Bowen to Charters Towers, up to the Tablelands and everywhere in between!
For many years when we were buying off local producers, we just assumed that anything that was local was going to be good.
Now I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but just because it’s local doesn’t mean it is fabulous. Don’t get me wrong – we love our farmers here, but there is much more that goes into growing fresh produce then just planting a seed, waiting for it to grow and then selling it.
I don’t know about you, but I have tried to plant and grow my own vegetables in the back yard (it’s a great activity to do with the kids). When we finally get our tomato plants nice and high and looking a million bucks, we always get super excited. But then, all of a sudden they go yellow and die – just as you think that it is time for your first harvest. It tends to all go awry around the same time your son pulls out your massive parsley bush thinking it was carrots (but that’s another story).
The reality is that to produce quality fruit and veg, you need to fertilise, prune, pray for good weather, hire an agronomist to do soil and leaf tests (to find out what your crop is lacking so that when the produce is picked it is going to be flavoursome).Then there is correct handling to consider; cooling and temperature will ensure that the produce has a great shelve life and that the consumer has a beautiful product to take home.
Over many years, we have built up relationships with our growers which ensures that all have an understanding of the quality and freshness our Lamberts customers expect.
One of Lamberts’ long-time friends is a smaller family farm located on the banks of Crystal Creek. It has a sandy loam soil which is great for growing veggies. Hall family Farms is mainly run by Damon (Rowdy) Hall, with his wife and four daughters. In the winter monthsthey produce zucchini, squash, corn and cucumbers, then paw paw, passionfruit, limes and hay throughout the rest of the year.
It is only when talking to Damon that you really understand why he is farming… it’s because he loves it.
During the season he is up before dawn, picking and packing his produce and on most days, he will work well into the night. He delivers his produce to Lamberts personally to show off his wares twice a week, then on the weekends he is running hay four hours down south to help out another farmers struggling with the drought.
And that’s what really keeps it interesting here at Lamberts. Every product has a story. It could be where or how it was grown, or it could be how our fresh chicken and beef come in whole and we make all of our specialty lines like Kiev, mignons, sausages, rissoles, smallgoods here in house.
It is all a huge team effort between our suppliers and our staff and it really gives our team a great sense of achievement knowing that each and every week, we have created something for ourselves… and most importantly, for our customers.
Beautiful fresh fruit and veggies that always inspire healthy meals.Local eggs and dairy, not to mention the in-house butcher. Prices are very competitive with the big guys but the quality and service is out of this world. Lamberts is our one-stop-shop for all things fresh.
Best tasting sausages in town! Beautiful meat and the fruit and veg are great. Nice knowing our money stays local and goes to the growers that need it.
I love that I can buy all of my fruit, veg, meat, dog and chicken food and accessories all in one place.
It is always at an affordable price and the staff are so friendly with genuinely good advice.