This Week in the Market – 18 September 2018

Edition 197: ‘A Better Choice’ is here
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In this week’s Market News:

– ‘A Better Choice’ is here
– New trial trading hours to commence October 1
– The Fresh Five talks to Sal from Arcella Bananas

Market News

A Better Choice is here!

The new national retailer program designed to encourage consumers to shop for fresh produce at their local greengrocer is rolling out this week across Victoria.
A Better Choice is designed to encourage consumers to shop for fresh produce at their local greengrocer. The program offers retailers the opportunity to have a higher profile in their local communities by positioning greengrocers as the experts in produce.
Membership is free and open to all independent fruit and vegetable retailers.
Becoming a member includes a range of benefits:

  • Licence to use A Better Choice brand
  • Driving Traffic to your website and your store through A Better Choice website
  • Point of Sale material including posters, recipe cards, wobblers, seasonal guides
  • Website with recipes, blog articles and produce content, you can use and share
  • Social Media content
  • Increased media buying power through combined advertising budget
  • Increased opportunity for media coverage and public relations due to national appeal

Get involved today!
Visit the Customer Service Centre at the Market or call 9258 6192.

This initiative has been proudly developed and funded by the central market operators (MMA and the interstate equivalents) and the central markets’ chambers of commerce (Fresh State and their interstate equivalents).

The Fresh Five

This week we talk to Market newcomer Sal from Arcella Bananas.
1. Your role at the Melbourne Market: I’m the Victorian State Manager for Arcella Bananas
2. If you could only take three fruits or vegetables with you to a desert island, which would you take: Definitely a banana, mainly because they’re packed with so many nutrients, B vitamins, potassium, vitamin C and folate. I’d also take jazz apples and berries.
3. When was the last time you bought flowers for someone: I buy my wife flowers pretty regularly anyway, but as soon as she realised there is a flower market here, I was doomed!
4. Tell us something that is on your ‘bucket list’: I’m still waiting to jump out of a plane, I’m a big thrill seeker.
5. What do you most enjoy about working at the Melbourne Market: The best thing is the people, lots of characters and laughs, makes the nights go faster.

Arcella Bananas started trading at the Melbourne Market earlier this month on 3 September, at store 57. Owner Pat Arcella started out in 1974 as a banana wholesaler at the Sydney Markets. He spent over 20 years gaining a wealth of knowledge about supply, demand and expectations for bananas, and went on to buy his first farm in 1996. Arcella Bananas are banana specialists with farms in Mareeba and Innisfail. They stock plenty of banana varieties at the Melbourne Market such as cavendish, lady fingers, monkey bananas, plantains and eco organic bananas. 

ATMs available at Market cafes

The big banks are reducing their ATM network across the country and we are not immune, with the Commonwealth Bank removing their ATM from the Market. But the good news is there are still locations around the Market to get cash out with Market cafes having ATMs in their premises.

Market Trading hours – trial to begin October 1

The issue of Market trading hours is one that often divides the Market community and our recent trading hours review was no exception, with opinions on the issue divided.
One recurring theme over the past three consultation exercises has been the desire for consistency, particularly from buyers and compounded by traffic congestion when leaving Epping. With this in mind, a 90-day trial will commence Monday 1 October for trade commencing at 3.30am, five days per week (that is an hour earlier on Tuesdays and Wednesdays).
During the consultation phase, a small number of buyers put forward strong cases for the need to have access to the Market trading floors prior to 3.30am. We heard this can be advantageous for sellers to smooth demand peaks during trade. To compliment the trial for consistent opening hours, the MMA is also in the process of assessing the merits of trialling an early buyers permit which Market users would be able to purchase for an additional significant fee.
The early buyers permit would allow these card holders to access the Market an hour earlier time of 2:30am for the trail period (length of the trail period is to be determined). The revenue generated from the early buyers permit will go straight back into the industry with 100% of fees going toward funding the national retailer program ‘A Better Choice’.
More information about the early buyers permit trial will be released as the details are finalised.
We would like to thank those who got involved with discussions and voiced their opinions regarding trading hours. We will keep users informed during the trial updating the Market community with the impacts from the opening time variation.

United Petrol Offer

To celebrate the construction works that are about to kick off to build the Market’s unmanned diesel station, United are offering Melbourne Market users an exclusive deal.
Sign up to a United Card and get 6c per litre off the price of fuel for 6 months!
When completed, the new diesel station will enable businesses to become more efficient, you can fill up at the Market before, during or after trade, meaning less unnecessary stops during your day. In addition to the competitively priced fuel that will be available within the Market, United Card holders can also take advantage of the 400+ petrol and diesel locations nationally.
To get yourself a United Card simply call 1300 383 587

Children in the Market

During the upcoming school holidays, you’ll have the opportunity to bring your children to spend a day at the Market on either, Wednesday 26 September and/or Thursday 27 September. Bringing your children to the Market is a great experience but their safety is our top priority. Please ensure you follow the below guidelines to ensure your children have a fun and safe experience.
To be involved you must:

  • Have work suitable to have a child with you at all times. E.g. if you travel on a forklift in the Market, it would not be suitable to bring a child to the Market as they must not ride on a forklift at any time and must remain in your care at all times.
  • Have submitted your registration form to the Customer Service Centre by the closing date.
  • Have a copy of your registration form on you at all times and present to a Market Relations Officer on request.
  • Have your child/children wearing their visitor pass at all times.
  • Have your child/children wearing high visibility clothing.
  • Have your child/children wearing enclosed footwear.
  • Enter via Gate 1.

Registrations will close on Tuesday 25 September and are limited to the first 100 registered children.
Download the registration form here, then complete and return to the Customer Service Centre as soon as possible.
Contact the MMA on 9258 6100 for more information.

Public Holiday closure

The Market will be closed on Friday 28 September for the AFL Grand Final eve public holiday.
Market trading hours before and after the public holiday will remain unchanged.

Industry News

Strawberry needle scare: Alarms bells ringing for the food industry

As of Monday 17 September there have been nine confirmed cases of strawberries found with needles in them and one consumer has been hospitalised.
The contamination of strawberries with sewing needles is likely to force a new approach from the food industry to protect its products from interference.
Read more at ABC News.

3D designs for North East Link released

3D designs, an interactive map and new ways to get involved are now available at
The latest update includes:

  • More detail about the project design and what North East Link could look like
  • How community feedback has helped shape changes
  • How key areas of community interest and concern are being considered
21 genius fruit and veggie hacks
How many do you know?

Key Dates

Wed 26 & Thurs 27 September           Children in the Market

Friday 28 September                           AFL Grand Final eve public holiday (Market closed)

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