All posts tagged: flood

Australian fruit and vegetable prices set to soar

“How much did you pay for the capsicum?” Small talk in the supermarket queue is not too common in this particular upmarket Brisbane enclave but the flood has changed all that. The woman behind me says she has just paid $9.99 a kilogram for hers at a vegetable shop nearby. I say mine was a comparative steal at $6.95 a kilogram. Later, I pay $10 for five bananas and three oranges at a vegetable shop stocked with a consignment of fruit and vegetables from Sydney. “You pay for quality,” the teller assures me when I express horror at the prices. There is worse to come. There are predictions that bananas will reach $15 a kilogram – similar to prices paid after Cyclone Larry devastated banana crops in 2006. There is no evidence of such extremes just yet but the niggling thought that a simple banana will be elevated to grand status is enough to encourage turning one’s garden into an orchard. Prime fruit and vegetable producers supplying SE Queensland were hard hit. In fact, Queensland …

Exclusive suburbs hard hit by flood

A month ago, I enjoyed a work Christmas lunch at an up-market jetty restaurant overlooking the Brisbane River. And then, at the height of Brisbane’s floods, I watched in fascination as the jetty housing its outdoor restaurant, floated down the Brisbane River, collided with a bridge and sunk. Ironically, it was called Drift. Stranded in our own little outlying semi-rural suburb, we could only watch in horror and disbelief as we saw footage of familiar stomping grounds swamped by water. Friends phoned to say they were leaving their home with the water lapping window sills. In another picturesque upmarket suburb, two more friends and their families had left their homes with one saying water was expected to reach roof height. The South African couple were renting the property but as many in the suburb, submerged in the 1974 floods, were unable to get flood insurance. They managed to remove a few items including treasured paintings, a washing machine and fridge but feared the worst. As newcomers to the country, we bought our very first home …