Coles customer's 'brilliant' hack to combat lettuce shortage: 'Wow'

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·News Reporter
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A Coles customer has shared a clever hack to combat the national lettuce shortage to ensure she doesn't have to live without it.

The shopper revealed that she decided to take matters into her own hands after she was unable to buy iceberg lettuce at her local Coles.

Lettuce growing in pot; Coles storefront with people lined up outside
A Coles customer has shared a clever hack to combat the national lettuce shortage to ensure she doesn't have to live without it. Source: Facebook/Getty

"I've stopped buying iceberg lettuce because my local Coles always sell out or not stocking them," wrote the shopper in a post to a popular Facebook group.

Rather than swearing off lettuce until the shortage is over, the woman decided to find one with roots and propagate it herself.

"I bought an oak lettuce with roots for $3. Picked off all the outer leaves and planted the root system," she shared.

'I can't live without lettuce'

"It's doubled in size in a few days. I can't live without lettuce," she wrote.

In the accompanying photo, the lettuce in question sits in a pot with several healthy leaves sprouting from the shoot.

When asked how she planted the store-bought lettuce, the shopper said she used the same potting mix she uses for indoor plants.

Empty fresh produce aisle at Coles supermarket
The Coles shopper's creative plan comes amid a national shortage of fresh produce. Source: Getty

"Just add some perlite to it for good drainage," she added.

The shopper's creative plan comes amid an Aussie lettuce shortage caused by floods and a recent cold snap, which has seen lettuce prices soar to $12 a head in some stores.

Unsurprisingly, the woman's Facebook post has been extremely popular, amassing over 1,700 likes and hundreds of comments since Monday.

"That's a brilliant idea!" wrote one user, with many others calling it "great" and "awesome".

Aussies growing their own lettuce at home amid shortage

Fellow shoppers flooded the comments, claiming they also decided to grow their own lettuce using store-bought lettuce with roots and seeds.

"I've done the same for immediate use and planting lettuce from seed intermittently now so I will have an ongoing supply," wrote one shopper.

"I have iceberg lettuce growing, I have been eating the outside leaves but now hearts are growing. I'm grabbing them as I like that part better and they re-grow back pretty quickly," chimed a second.

Aussie shoppers' photos of homegrown lettuce
Aussie shoppers shared that they have grown their own lettuce at home using store-bought lettuce and seeds. Source: Facebook

"I did the same thing! It grows crazy fast! Same with store bought bok choy. Chop the top off and plant it in soil. I have heaps sprouting off," wrote another.

Meanwhile others shared that they had adopted the same method to grow their own celery, tomatoes and even pineapples at home.

eBay reveals lettuce seed sales up 209 per cent

It seems the shopper's secret lettuce hack is not so secret, as recent data from eBay Australia has shown lettuce seed sales are up 209 per cent in June.

The online retailer said that shoppers are looking to bypass supply issues by growing produce themselves, as there has been a significant upward trend in sales of soil, garden beds and watering cans.

"Aussies everywhere are feeling the pinch of overpriced produce and a supply shortage, from empty grocery shelves to major fast food chains having to swap out lettuce for cabbage," said eBay Australia's Sophie Onikul.

"While the nation grapples with the cost of living and produce shortages, customers are literally taking matters into their own hands by turning to eBay to grow their own produce in their backyards to not only get their greens but save money in the long run."

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