Shoppers in last-minute frenzy

SECURING fresh food for tomorrow’s festive feast will be high on the agenda for many shoppers today.

Thousands are expected to flock to the district’s supermarkets, greengrocers, butchers and 

fishmongers to take advantage of final trading hours before stores close for the Christmas and Boxing Day public holidays.

Major Tamworth supermarkets will stay open until 10pm or 11pm, while Aldi will close at 7pm.

Most butchers and fruit and vegetable stores will kick off the day early at 7 o’clock and trade through until 5pm or 6pm.

Mark Knight, director of Kays Meats, was bracing himself for the predicted onslaught.

“It will be on tomorrow morning,” Mr Knight said yesterday.

“It’s been very strong today, extremely strong, but I think everyone, as usual, is leaving things until the last minute.”

Prawns and Christmas hams top the list of the most sought-after delights at this time of year, with many retailers stocking up accordingly.

“We have hundreds of kilos of large tiger prawns,” Mr Knight said.

Not to be outdone, pork loin roasts and turkey breasts were also “going out the door”, according to McWilliams Meats manager Chris Bruton.

Boat to Bush Seafood will be at their Roderick St, Tamworth site and in Gunnedah at the BP station on the corner of Abbott and Barber streets from 7am and 6am 

respectively – but only until they sell out.

“The earlier people come, the better,” Boat to Bush Seafood’s Wayne Duncan said. “By lunch time there’s not much left.”

Farmer Bobs Fruit Market is reporting booming sales of the the traditional Christmas fair - cherries, watermelons, lettuce and spuds, while the owner of online fruit and vegetable store Paradise Fresh said the region’s addiction to the quintessential summer stone fruit had gone into overdrive.

“We’re pretty well right here for veggies - mangoes are own main worry,” Brendan North said.

“We stocked up on them big time but people are very hungry for them.”

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