Prawns popular: FishCo Downunder managing director John Fragopoulos says Canberrans have been feasting on seafood this Easter. File photo: Lannon Harley
Food retailers have reported one of their busiest weekends of trade, with hot cross buns and fish flying off the shelves over the Easter long weekend.
FishCo Fish Market managing director John Fragopoulos said Easter was the second busiest time of the year after Christmas.
He said fish fillets had sold out by Saturday and demand for prawns had been very strong.
“We’ve been in the business for about 30 years and we know what to expect from Christmas and Easter so we were prepared but trading was better than expected,” he said on Monday.
Mr Fragopoulos said that because prawns were still in season, quality was still good and prices reasonable.
"The advantage of having Easter at this time of the year means that prawns are in abundance," he said.
"Average prices of prawns were about $25 - $30 a kilogram which is about $6 or $7 cheaper than Christmas and even last year’s Easter."
Mr Fragopoulos said sales had also been boosted by the fact the Orthodox and Catholic Easters had coincided.
“Regardless of how traditions may fade over the years, Easter is still strong,” he said.
“Everything was very good for us and I’m assuming for everyone else in the industry.”
Bakeries in Braidwood and Goulburn also reported strong sales, as travellers headed away for the Easter long weekend.
John Woodman, whose family owns and runs Trappers Bakery and Braidwood Bakery, said hot-cross buns had sold out, while pies and coffees had sold well.
Each store had made about 3000 hot-cross buns on Good Friday.
“We started selling them a week ago and we started progressively making more and more each day as the days went on but we haven’t made any today [Monday] because we generally find on Easter Monday, people are hot-cross bunned out,” he said.
Mr Woodman estimated about 5000 people walked through the doors of each store.
“It’s been crazy,” he said.
“Generally Good Friday is the biggest day of the year, Easter Monday pretty much comes second.”
Mr Fragopoulos said more than 4½ tonnes of prawns had been sold at his two stores in Belconnen and Fyshwick during Easter.
“Traditionally fish is usually higher in sales over Easter,” he said.
About seven tonnes of Atlantic salmon was sold while barramundi, flathead and game fish such as tuna, sword fish and marlin, had also been popular.
“People prefer something easy and simple, skinless and boneless preferably or something that they don’t have to spend a lot of time preparing and most of the species I mentioned can be cooked quite easily on the barbie or in the oven or fried or grilled,” he said.
Mr Fragopoulos estimated customer numbers doubled over Easter.