Potato farmers have a challenging task at hand. Many Sunraysian farmers grow around 15,000 tonnes of vegetable annually. However, a majority of tuck companies are refusing to service the properties around this area because of Curran Road. Residents of this area are of the opinion that the quality has been deteriorating for years without any solutions. Moreover, some farmers also state that they are requiring four to five extra trucks to get their products out to the fresh markets.
The sole cause of this is the state of this road. Hari Yellina, of Orchard Tech, has stated that this situation will make it extremely difficult for farmers to expand their agri-business. Since many are refusing to come and pick up his vegetables, he has to spend unnecessary time trying to provide a solution to this. Alas, one of the only workarounds of this is paying extra, which means giving up a great chunk of his profit.
The majority of farmers, who live in the area, have complained to the state council. However, there were no steps taken to mend the chaotic road conditions. Since Curran Road is identified as an access road, it qualifies for just one grade once a year. This means that when issues are reported by farmers, the State sends out personnel to inspect the situation. However, upgrades are not guaranteed.
South Australian farmers supply 80% of the country’s fresh washed potatoes, with an average production of 280,000 tonnes. With more than 11,900 hectares under cultivation, the industry consists of 100 potato businesses, of which approximately 50 are growers. The industry directly employs more than 2000 people.