Tomatoes and three little piggies stolen for market

Tuesday May 12, 2020 Written by Published in Crime
Kata: Tomato crop and three pigs missing. Kata: Tomato crop and three pigs missing.

Rarotonga’s Wigmore’s Farm were looking forward to a fresh supply of tomatoes for their local market – but when their workers went to pick them, they were all gone.

The company discovered on Thursday that there were barely any tomatoes left on their four farms in Tikioki.

They believe the thieves raided most of their plantation and the rest were destroyed by the chickens after the intruders left the fence open.

To add to their misery, they also noticed three of their pigs missing on Sunday. They believe the pigs were taken on Saturday.

Tania Wigmore said their plantations had been raided several times and pigs had mysteriously gone missing in the past.

She is asking the public to beware of anyone trying to sell tomatoes, especially those who may not own a plantation on the island.

“We have four tomato plantation in Tikioki and they were ready for harvesting. But when the boys went to pick the tomatoes on Thursday, there was nothing left,” Wigmore said.

“They were there a day before and we believe the thieves must have raided the farm overnight.

“They also left the fence open so whatever was left were destroyed by the chickens.”

Wigmore said on Sunday one of their workers noticed three pigs were missing from their piggery.

“They are fed every day and our worker noticed three were missing when he went to feed them on Sunday, so they would have been taken on Saturday.

“Our pigs constantly go missing which is very frustrating because we spend over $800 a week to feed them.”

Wigmore said they spend a lot of time, effort and money on their plantations and piggery.

She said it was “very frustrating” to see their hard work go to waste by the actions of “some people who had no concern for others”.

“If you find that someone who does not own a plantation of tomato, or does not plant is trying to sell them to you, turn them away. We should not be supporting people that reap the benefits of others hard work,” Wigmore said.

“This is not the first time our plantations have been robbed, there have been countless thefts of pigs, lemons, oranges anything thieves can lay their hands on. Most of the time it’s our younger generations.”

Wigmore said they understood times were tough due to the Covid-19 crisis.

“My grandfather taught our family that it is always better to give then to receive, so we will definitely be happy to help where we can,” she said.

“During this time we all must help one another and not bring each other down by benefiting from others hard work.”

Police said Rarotonga had ongoing issues with the theft of crops, even without the threat of a pandemic.

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