Courgette prices jumped 74 per cent to an all-time high of $21.42 per kilo in June as a vegetable virus-related shortage looms, according to Stats NZ figures.

Imports of the vegetable from Queensland are still being barred.

"New Zealand has a limited supply of courgettes around this time of year as the local growing season comes to an end, so we would typically see courgette imports from Australia fill the gap," consumer prices manager Sarah Johnson said.

Overall vegetable prices also rose in June, up 7.6 per cent, influenced by seasonally higher prices for tomatoes, cucumbers, lettuce, and courgettes.

Both tomatoes and courgettes are more expensive than usual at this time of the year.


Typical falls for winter crops such as potatoes, onions, and carrots offset these price rises.

Overall, food prices rose 0.5 per cent in June, with higher vegetable prices partly offset by a 1.8 per cent drop in fruit prices.

The potato industry fears frozen chips are being dumped on the New Zealand market from Europe, with Potatoes New Zealand filing a complaint of dumping with the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment.

"There's a significant amount of inventory of frozen fries sitting there that could basically wipe out our entire domestic industry almost overnight," said Potatoes New Zealand CEO Chris Claridge told One News.

"So you will get cheap chips for a period of time and then when the domestic producers are wiped out, I will guarantee you the price will go up."

Claridge warned it could result in job losses at New Zealand's five potato processors, where 450 people are employed.

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