Allora finally has its own farmer’s market, thanks to Percy Pugliese and his traveling market truck.

Percy Pugliese

Every Wednesday from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. Percy will be found at the Blue Cow Hotel, Allora.  His truck is stocked  with ripe tomatoes, local honey and eggs, fresh herbs, and a myriad other tasty items. Percy arrives before the sun does, his breath puffing out in clouds as he hustles sorting fat peas, glossy capsicums, and rarer items such as pomegranates, Asian pears, and Italian melons.

Although the selection of vegetables changes each week, the standards are always available: potatoes, onions, cucumber, tomatoes and carrots. Amongst them you might find bright green chokos, delicate broccolini, or plump fennel bulbs. The fruit selection follows the same pattern: staples such as bananas, apples, and traditional citrus mix with ruby strawberries and blood oranges.He sells produce gathered from local farms in Nobby, Gatton, and Stanthorpe, filling in the gaps with produce from the Brisbane markets. Born and bred on an apple orchard in Stanthorpe, Percy says that fresh, quality produce is in his blood.

customer choosing beans

“I just love it!” he said, shoulders hunched against the cold of a winter morning. “To me I believe I’m providing people with good, quality fruits and veg and looking after their budgets at the same time.”

Organic veggies and fruit are available upon request, and he’s more than happy to fill special orders.

“I’m happy to bring out whatever,” he said, “that includes grocery items like bread and milk.”

This week will be his fourth in Allora, and he is pleased that it is already a success.

“Twenty years ago I did door to door runs,” Percy said. “Most people know who I am so it didn’t take long to build it up. They know me and they trust me.”

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Words and photos by Krista Bjorn