This Week In The Market – 29 June 2021

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In this week’s Market News:

– Josh Sharma joins Grower’s Advisory Committee
– Face masks must continue to be worn indoors
– 12 businesses trial new customer portal

Market News
The MMA welcomes Josh Sharma to the Grower’s Advisory Committee

Your role in the market?
I’m the 2IC at Farmgate Fresh. My dad owns the family business, and I’ve worked here for about 6-7 years.

What are you most passionate about in relation to the fresh produce industry?
My family comes from a retail background, so I am passionate about making sure that everything that ends up at our buyers’ store is just as it should be. When it comes to fresh produce, I’m passionate about quality, consistency and pricing.

What do you see as the most important issues for the market and the industry?
It’s a dying industry, and we need to get young blood in. I think it’s important to find new ways to attract the next generation into the industry and into the market to compete against the big supermarkets.

Why did you want to become a member of the advisory committee?
I wanted to be a voice for the people on the trading floor who are hesitant to speak up; I want those people’s voices to be heard.

What’s something your market colleagues might not know about you?
I’m not very hidden; I’m pretty outspoken, so people know most things about me. Outside the market, I love cars, music and sport, with AFL, ice hockey and martial arts being my favourites.

Coronavirus (COVID-19) update
Fitted face masks must continue to be worn indoors at the Melbourne Market, and outdoors in any situation where social distancing cannot be maintained. 

To help ensure the safety and business continuity of the Melbourne Market, the MMA imposes penalties for those not wearing face masks or for those not following social distancing rules.
On Friday last week, nine suspensions were issued for non-compliance for mask-wearing in a single morning. 

We ask you to be vigilant and continue to follow COVIDSafe practices.Wear your face mask at all times when indoorsFollow social distancing practices; keep 1.5 metres from others wherever possible, only one person per buggy.Do not attend the Melbourne Market if you are feeling unwell.If you are experiencing COVID symptoms, get tested and isolate until you receive a negative result.

New Customer Portal trial begins
Over the past 18 months, the MMA has been working on a series of digital transformation projects.

The first step was implementing a single integrated customer relationship management (CRM) system, which resulted in streamlined invoices on a single consolidated statement with payment into one bank account. 

With the foundation CRM works now completed, our next step is to roll out a customer portal, providing market users with a digital platform to view their account details and interactions with the MMA.

Last month, several market businesses signed up to trial the new ‘My MMA Portal’. This first group of 12 businesses are trialling the system for a period of three months, providing the MMA with valuable feedback, and allowing us to iron out any kinks in the system before it is rolled out to all market businesses. 

Phase one of ‘My MMA Portal’ will contain:
Business Account Information – View your business contact details to ensure they are accurate.
Statements & Payments – View your account balances, recent tax invoices/statements, with the ability to lodge payments online.
Access & Permits – View all account access cards in use by the business, with the ability to deactivate access cards.
Repairs, Infringements, and Incidents – List of all repairs, infringements and incidents allocated to the business. This section will provide the ability to lodge support or maintenance requests via the portal. This is just the first phase of our portal rollout. We intend to add more features to the portal over time, such as the glycol portal, parking allocations, forklift registrations, and applying for access cards.

To find out more information, or to volunteer your business to take part in the My MMA Portal trial, contact Amanda Flannery at 

Certificate III in Greengrocery – Now accepting round 2 enrolments

The first round of students are over halfway through completing the Certificate III in Greengrocery, and by all accounts, the first intake of students are enjoying the course and learning a lot. The course has offered participants valuable insight and knowledge on topics like; produce knowledge; health and workplace safety; customer service; cash sales and advice; floristry skills; communications, and interpersonal skills. 

Don’t miss out, make sure you or your staff are part of the next intakes. Generous funding opportunities are still available. Contact Theresa for more information on how to register. 

To learn more about the course, click here to view the course guide.

It’s never too late to get qualified, so find out more at

Scheduled power and water outages

This week, on Tuesday 29th and Wednesday 30th June, sections of the market will undergo temporary power and water shutdowns to perform crucial preparation work for the solar canopies.
All scheduled outages are planned during the day, to ensure minimal impact to market operations. 

Relevant businesses have been sent emails and/or letters regarding the outages. 

Click the links below for further information.
Power outage communication
Water outage communication

Update on Blueberry Rust Market Access to Tasmania

Effective from Friday 18 June 2021, Tasmania has removed its acceptance of Victoria’s Area Freedom status for blueberry rust due to detections of the disease in Victoria.
As pre-cautionary measure, Tasmania has made the decision to suspend acceptance of Victoria’s Area Freedom status for blueberry rust, effective from Friday 18 June 2021.
Any plant or plant product host of blueberry rust sourced from Victoria will now need to meet Tasmania’s 
Import Requirement 28: Blueberry Rust – Hosts and Vectors.
See Industry Notice at:
Contact or call (03) 8401 6900 for more information.

Flower Market Research Project – Have your say!
External professional services firm Sapere has been engaged by the Melbourne Market Authority (MMA) to research the current and evolving needs of the tenants and buyers at the Melbourne Wholesale Flower Market.

To help us enhance the flower market’s offering, we want to hear from a broad range of flower growers, flower wholesalers, and flower buyers (including greengrocers) through a survey.
All information provided will be beneficial, and we welcome honest feedback and opinions.
Click here to begin the survey

Any responses or information you provide in the below survey will be treated as commercially confidential to Sapere. The results will only be reported to the MMA in aggregate, meaning no data or information will be attributable to a specific organisation or individual.

Another Vic Shop & Win winner! 
Congratulations to Alexandra Fruit and Vegetables, whose customer won the iRobot Roomba this week!
The Shop & Win campaign has been a great success in Victoria, with four customers claiming prizes since the launch in March.

Pamela Thompson, the winning customer, nominated Alexandra Fruit and Vegetables as her preferred local fruit and veg store. There are still a few weeks left of the campaign, so remember to continue telling your customers about the competition so they too can have a chance at winning amazing prizes!

What’s coming up next?
A Better Choice! is preparing the next campaign, and we look forward to sharing all the details with you over the coming months. 

Thank you to everyone for your continued drive of the Shop & Win competition, and for your ongoing support of A Better Choice!


A Better Choice feedback
Do you have feedback or questions about the A Better Choice program?
We’d love to hear from you, send an email to

Zero Tolerance on Drugs and Alcohol
The health and safety of market users is our number one priority. That is why working under the influence of alcohol or prohibited drugs is not permitted at the Melbourne Market. Individuals or businesses who are found consuming or supplying alcohol on-site risk severe penalties, including having lease or licence terminated for businesses, or lengthy suspensions and possible bans for individuals. 

To learn more about the MMA’s policy on drug and alcohol use, visit

Industry News
Top 20 out now

The Produce Plus-Nielsen IQ Top 20 Products is back in 2021, with free access to the digital version available via the Produce Plus app for a limited time. The Top 20 analyses the performance of the top fresh fruit and vegetable products in the Australian market.

Can you guess who took out this year’s top spot..?
Click here to read more.

Catherine Velisha recognised by industry

Third-generation farmer and managing director of Velisha Farms, Catherine Velisha, has been crowned the Boomaroo Nurseries Women in Horticulture winner. Announced at the Hort Connections 2021 National Awards for Excellence event in early June, the award recognises a leading female member of the Australian horticulture industry who has demonstrated outstanding ability and success in her chosen field.
Click here to read more. 

2020 – The year everything about fresh produce consumption changed
A study into consumer shopping and consumption behaviour during the COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the important role of Australian horticulture in helping people find health and wellbeing through the benefits of fresh fruit, vegetables, nuts, nursery and turf products. Australians also wanted to show their support for Australian growers by purchasing locally made produce.
Read more about the findings by clicking here

Melbourne Market Job Board

Do you have a vacancy to fill in your business?
Email for the position to be placed on our online job board.
Looking for a new role? Check out the online job board via the button below. View full online job board

Ask the MMA
If you’ve got a question for the MMA email it to:
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