Mango harvest in Katherine kicks off with a moderate volume crop but great quality fruit

Mango harvest in Katherine kicks off with a moderate volume crop but great quality fruit

Mango harvest in Katherine kicks off with a moderate volume crop but great quality fruit

Updated 28 September 2017, 12:45 AEST

Mango harvesting has kicked off in Katherine, one of Australia's largest mango producing regions, with the crop expected to be slightly down on the forecast of 1.7 million trays.

Darwin and Kununurra regions sent 172,675 trays of mangoes to markets last week with the Darwin region about halfway through its harvest.

Manbulloo Mangoes was one of the first farms to start picking in Katherine, harvesting early maturing fruit last week.

Logistics manager Karl Gyger said he was very pleased with the quality of this year's mangoes.

"The fruit is looking really good, there is some fantastic pink blush across all of it, maturity of the fruit is fantastic so people are going to have a great eating experience when it hits the shelves in a week to 10 days time," he said.

"Yield this year should be reasonably good. We would describe it as a moderate year.

"I think overall the flowering was quite good. We have had some quite warm weather so we have had to keep the water up to the trees to make sure that we hold this fantastic crop."

During the early stages of harvest, Mr Gyger said the workers in the 22 cherry pickers on the farm were selecting very mature fruit.

"The guys in the paddock are looking for a nice broad piece of fruit across the nose, some shoulders — which is where the stem goes in — we want that to be a little sunken so the shoulders come up," he said.

"We are also looking for colour in the fruit which transitions from a green to a very light lime green colour."

Mr Gyger said demand for mangoes had been reasonably strong in the past few weeks but expected sales to pick up as warmer weather started to hit southern states.

"Darwin producers are in quite full swing and we are seeing that fruit move through the market reasonably well at the moment," he said.

"I think hot weather and summer conditions scream 'mangoes'.