Ongoing bad weather is hitting New Zealand's $35 million Northern Wairoa kumara growing epicentre hard.
"We're two to three weeks behind schedule," Doug Nilsson, Northern Wairoa Vegetable and Produce Growers Association president, said.
"If it stays quite cool and not very good weather, it could affect early season production in January."
Constant daily small quantities of rain for almost two months means growers have been unable to plant out as many as usual of the thousands of cloche-covered kumara beds essential in the process of producing fresh new-season kumara for Kiwi dinner plates from late January.
The season's start is