The Informer: Making lemonade in 2020

Life is not even going to give you lemons at the moment - and certainly not for free.

A higher price for produce is one of the ramifications of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Picture: Shutterstock

A higher price for produce is one of the ramifications of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Picture: Shutterstock

Prices have jumped, with a single lemon setting you back $2.50. A kilogram from most major grocery retailers will be somewhere north of $13.

It's just one of the many ramifications of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, with off-season lemon supplies expensive of a poor quality. The shutdowns earlier this year had led Australian growers to focus on exports.

Citrus Australia chair Ben Cant said a perfect storm had driven the price rise.

"Like a lot of businesses this year, it has been a roller coaster both emotionally and financially. If you are paying a little bit extra for a lemon, it is going to a good place," he said.

Just be sure to turn it into lemonade.

Meanwhile, NSW has recorded a complete infection cycle - 14 days - without a single locally transmitted coronavirus case.

There were 10 cases diagnosed in hotel quarantine from 16,000 tests completed across the state. NSW is still treating 70 cases.

In Victoria, just one active case of COVID-19 remains, a far cry from the high case numbers being recorded each day just a few months ago. The state hasn't recorded a case for 22 days.

Over the border in South Australia, Premier Steven Marshall has warned the state isn't out of the woods despite no fresh cases of community transmission from its outbreak.

"The expert health advice we have received is that we are still managing a very dangerous cluster," Mr Marshall said.

A six-day lockdown has been cut short after authorities discovered a pizza shop worker had lied to contact tracers about his whereabouts. There are 37 known active cases in South Australia, while some 5400 people remain in isolation.

Of course, our attention is starting to turn to what life might look like on the other side of the pandemic.

The 21 members of the Asia-Pacific Economic Co-operation group, better known as APEC, said they wouldn't resort to protectionist policies. Even US President Donald Trump and China's President Xi Jinping signed the communique.

And then there's the matter of vaccines, the development of which has run full-steam ahead.

Though Australian National University researchers have found fewer than two thirds of Australians say they will definitively get a COVID jab when they can.

The survey of 3000 adult Australians found women, those living in disadvantaged areas, those who had more populist views and those who had higher levels of religiosity were more likely to be hesitant about taking a vaccine.

The path back to whatever the future normal looks like is still not a clear-cut one.

But the European Union has found a reason to be positive: it's upbeat about post-Brexit trade negotiations.

European Union commission president Ursula von der Leyen said, "This is good."

So there, it's not all doom and gloom.

*This edition of The Informer was written by The Canberra Times reporter Jasper Lindell. If you'd like to show your support for the team behind The Informer, why not forward us to a friend?

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This story Making lemonade in 2020 first appeared on The Canberra Times.