Tauranga cafes have pulled long-time dishes and sushi shops are directly canvassing local orchard owners as avocado supplies plummet and prices soar across the country.

Of the three Tauranga supermarkets Bay of Plenty Times visited, only one had avocados in stock, which sat at a pretty price of $5.99 each.

This follows the New Zealand Herald reporting last week the price of avocados in Auckland had soared past the $10 mark, with the fruit sporting a $12.50 price tag at a Remuera greengrocer on May 7.

K-Sushi shop owner and avocado fan Essie Park was scrambling to get avocados and had contacted multiple growers in Te Puna as her supply was running short.


The shop was still serving sushi with big slices of avocado thanks to a "big box" of the revered fruit stowed in the chill room earlier in the year, but this was quickly dwindling.

Park said she had recently contacted multiple growers around Te Puna to ask if they had any stock, but she did not have any luck and was waiting for the new season.

Pluto Soup Juice and Salad Bar manager Sarah Yabsley said the eatery had pulled its chicken and avocado salad for the first time ever due to the price hike.

"We had to change it because we weren't getting them in and when we were getting them in, they were rock solid.

"You can't really leave them out of a smoked chicken and avocado salad, you know."

"It's just too crazy ... we couldn't help it, we tried."

New Zealand Avocado chief executive Jen Scoular said prices fluctuated throughout the season, as with all fresh produce.

Crop volumes and supply can vary season to season and the last season ran from June 2018 to March this year, meaning there was a very low supply of avocados until the new season began.

She expected to see new season Hass avocados available shortly.

Foodstuffs New Zealand, whose brands included Pak'n Save and New World, head of external relations Antoinette Laird said the supply declined according to the season.

Yesterday , Pak'n Save Tauranga was selling avocados for $5.99 each while a reporter was told New World Brookfield had no avocados in stock.

A Countdown spokesperson said avocado prices were driven purely by seasonality as the fruit was not imported and relied on local production.

Prices were expected to go down later in the month when the next harvest began, she said.

The spokesperson said avocados at stores in the Upper North Island were $5.50 each where available, compared to $5 each in the Lower North and South Islands.

Countdown on Cameron Rd had no avocados in stock when a reporter visited yesterday.

Gate Pā-based The Fresh Market founder David Stewart said it was perfectly normal for the supply of the seasonal fruit to drop towards winter.

He said the shop had a small amount of stock and there might be some reed avocados coming from up north next week.

He said he was selling the fruit for $6 a pop.