It’s more than just the fruit

Consequences of climate change on Australian agriculture

Featured in

  • Published 20210129
  • ISBN: 978-1-922212-56-6
  • Extent: 264pp
  • Paperback (234 x 153mm), eBook

MANGOES ARE DEEPLY embedded in my childhood. Even now the smell or taste of the fruit connects me instantly to hot summers in Brisbane. I can see myself as a seven-­year-­old sitting under the sprinkler with mango juice running through my fingers, fighting my siblings for the seed. Sweet, sticky mangoes signalled that summer had begun, school was over and holidays had started. Mangoes just seemed to arrive – and in abundance. How that happened, of course, meant nothing to me. Looking back, I think my lifelong passion for mangoes began to bud in that time.

For over a decade, I have been working with mango industries as a social scientist to understand purchasing attitudes towards mangoes in Australia, Hong Kong, China and, more recently, across five South-­East Asian countries. While consumer demand for mangoes is increasing across the region, and my work with the industry sector is dynamic, it’s not all good news. Farmers have been struggling to manage the impacts of a changing climate on annual mango crops that have already resulted in fewer mangoes for the Australian season. I see this when I go into a supermarket, an independent grocer or a farmers’ market: mangoes are not arriving with the abundance they did when I was a child. If I was unaware of the mechanics of mango supply as a child, the issue is now front and centre for me.

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About the author

Robin E Roberts

Robin E Roberts is an agribusiness researcher with the Griffith Asia Institute. She is internationally recognised for a dedicated interest in Australia’s agriculture and...

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