NO SHORTAGE: Retail sales manager Alister Robertson of the Ballina Fishermen’s Co-op with fresh prawns.
NO SHORTAGE: Retail sales manager Alister Robertson of the Ballina Fishermen’s Co-op with fresh prawns. Jay Cronan

Cyclone could rock the prawn boat

CHRISTMAS lunch, the most iconic family event of the season every year, could be rudely interrupted by Cyclone Evan, the same one that has caused havoc in the Pacific Islands this week.

A Northern Rivers family lunch on December 25 is not complete without a truckload of prawns, a gigantic Christmas ham and silly Christmas hats.

OK, maybe not a truckload, but at least a big platter of seafood from Ballina and a ham from Bangalow.

Ballina Fishermen's Co-op is preparing or their biggest weekend of the year from this Friday, but Cyclone Evan may get in the way.

"Monday is the biggest day of the year for us, with the equivalent of 40 days of trade just on Christmas Eve," said retail manager Alister Robertson.

Mr Robertson said that Cyclone Evan may bring some rough seas to the Northern Rivers in the lead-up to Christmas, meaning that local fishermen would not be able to catch as many local snapper and prawns as expected.

"There will be no shortage of fish or seafood as we will have enough stock, but it would be better if the fishers can go out and catch some more," he said.

After prawns, the most desired products at the co-op every year are green prawns, crustaceans, fish fillets and spanner crab.

But next to the seafood platter, Christmas lunch must always include ham.

Bangalow Sweet Pork owner Damien Dougherty said his company supplies butchers and restaurants with hams and other pork products from Port Douglas to Melbourne.

Mr Dougherty confirmed that when talking pork, a glazed ham is arguably the most traditional of Christmas dishes in Australia.

"Traditionally people are after hams and they glaze them in various ways."

And don't forget the silly Christmas hats, they are mandatory.



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