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Woolworths reveals eye-opening details about its avocados

Brooke Rolfe
·News Reporter
·2-min read

Eye-opening details about Woolworths' avocados have been revealed after a customer probed the supermarket for answers.

The curious consumer took to Twitter on the weekend, requesting the retailer divulge how long it takes for avocados to appear in stores after being picked. 

In its comprehensive response, the supermarket revealed how many days avocados are in storage or transit before being put on display. 

Woolworths store shown.
Woolworths revealed the standard number of days that go by before avocados appear in stores. Source: Getty Images

"While we can only give rough estimates, the best case scenario for avocados being delivered from farm to shelf is around seven days," an employee explained.

The time frame allowed for "transport from the growing region to the desired market" as well as three to four days of additional ripening, which changed depending on what season it was, they said. 

"As avocados don't ripen on the tree, fruit picked green can last up to a month before being ripened and consumed with no discernible difference to its consumption," the employee added. 

Domestic avocados make it to shelves by a maximum of 14 days after being picked, while a maximum of 28 days is the allowance for imported avocados.

Why you should never squeeze an avocado

Shoppers hunting for the perfect avocado have previously been urged against executing the popular "squeeze test" when searching for one with the perfect ripeness. 

A 2018 study by the Queensland Department of Agriculture and Fisheries (QDAF), The University of Queensland and Avocados Australia found that 97 per cent of survey participants squeezed the fruit before they purchased it.

The typical buyer also tested three times more fruit than they actually purchased.

While it might seem harmless, squeezing an avocado actually causes it to bruise, according to QDAF lead researcher Professor Daryl Joyce.

Person holds avocado in supermarket.
Domestically sourced avocados are offered for sale no more than 14 days after being picked. Source: Getty Images

“It has been found that shoppers typically apply compression forces ranging from 3 to 30 Newtons (N) to firm-ripe avocado fruit when assessing ripeness,” he said.

“For context, a 'slight' thumb compression of 10N applied to a firm-ripe fruit causes bruising to appear within 48 hours at 20°C.”

How to make your avocado ripen

While shoppers may feel compelled to run their fingers over the entire piece of fruit, Avocados Australia chief executive John Tyas said they should instead gently press the stem end only.

"Your store-bought avocado should ripen within a few days as the ripening process will have already begun. If you want to be sure, simply put the fruit in a bag with a banana," Mr Tyas said.

"However, if the fruit has already started to ripen this will not make it ripen any quicker."

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