END OF AN ERA: Elizabeth Mansfield from Team Fruit & Veg, which will no longer operate in Roma.
END OF AN ERA: Elizabeth Mansfield from Team Fruit & Veg, which will no longer operate in Roma. Blake Antrobus

Team Fruit & Veg set to close after hardships

FOR fruit and vegetable vendor Tony Mansfield, his recent issues with the ‘big fellas’ is hardly a David and Goliath case of beating the odds.

The local fruit and vegetable vendor is calling it quits on his business Team Fruit and Veg, after ongoing financial hardships involving big business chains, contract delays and ongoing issues with communication.

The recent communication breakdown has resulted in Mr Mansfield running out of money to operate his business, and Mr Mansfield said it’s a sign “the big fellas have won”.

“Costs and everything else have beaten us. Running our business on the side of the road gets more and more difficult without a base of operations,” he said.

Mr Mansfield hoped to use the site of the old Roma Butter Factory to open up a shop to compete in the area, which was approved after discussions with Maranoa Regional Council.

But he claims a communication breakdown and ongoing issues with the site led to him being unable to trade in Roma.

“It was an ideal place, but I can’t do anything and get another building because of the contract,” he said.

“How do I keep on going with no place to set up? How do I compete against big businesses in the area?”

“I might only be doing fortnightly runs from now on, by the looks of things, and we might not be passing through Roma anymore. Unless I can get things stirred up somewhere, I’m finished.”

Councillor Cameron O’Neil said the final contract had been drafted in accordance with the tender and conditions, and said Council had worked closely with the company to accommodate their requests throughout the process.

“I reached out to the tenderer, Tony Mansfield on Thursday afternoon. I have has organised to meet with Mr Mansfield and Council staff to discuss the contract,” he said.


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