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Prepare To See A Lot Of 'Ugly' Fruit On The Shelves At Woolies And Coles

In the wake of the drought and coronavirus crisis, supermarkets are relaxing their specifications and allowing imperfect fruit and veg to fill our shelves.

Australian shoppers are encouraged to embrace 'ugly' fresh produce in an effort to support farmers and keep supermarket shelves stocked amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Prior to this year, supermarket giants such as Coles and Woolworths upheld strict specifications that ensured their produce was for the most part blemish-free and of high quality.

In January, stores began to relax these restrictions in response to the interrupted supply chain caused by the country's devastating drought and bushfire season.

Image: Supplied

Now, specifications have lowered once again in order to support growers and suppliers and continue offering Australians fresh fruit and veg after the COVID-19 pandemic sparked a significant surge in sales and demand.

According to a Coles spokesperson: "We have relaxed specifications around things like cosmetic blemishes, size, and appearance in consultation with our partners."

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Woolworths’ head of produce Paul Turner told the ABC that these specifications are subject to change according to the current state of supply and demand.

“Our specifications are adaptable so we can respond to the quality, quantity and availability of produce in the market,” Turner said.

“Customers may see some difference in size on some of our fruit and vegetables as we work with our growers to ensure continuity of supply.”

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Second-grade -- or 'ugly' -- produce largely tastes exactly the same and is of similar quality. Growers stress that aesthetics are the only thing that makes them different.

Featured image: Supplied

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