Summer Shocker:Prices of Veggies and Fruits Soar
CHENNAI: The prices of fruits and vegetables continue to spiral in the city and traders believe with the mercury rising, the rates may further skyrocket affecting the budgets of middle-class households. Traders are betting that prices of beans, tomato, avarakai and ladies finger could rise further due to a huge demand push from the neighbouring states where the prices have risen too.
S Chandran, president, Koyambedu Vegetable Wholesale Merchants Association, told City Express the prices would continue to rise till June when the yields from the fresh crops arrive in the market. Currently, vegetable prices in Kerala, Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh have also gone up and it will have an adverse impact in Chennai too.
Abdul Kader, secretary, Koyambedu Vegetable Wholesale Merchants Association, said there won’t be any respite from the rising vegetables prices. “We expect it to rise by another Rs 10-Rs 15 a kg next week. The trend will continue till the heat abates,” says Kader. The price of tomatoes which is now selling at Rs 35-Rs 40 per kg will skyrocket further, warn traders. Barely 2-3 weeks ago, tomato was being sold at Rs 10 a kg. Similar is the story of beans which has become unaffordable to many families with its price touching Rs 100 a kg. Currently, beans are procured from Karnataka border as Ooty beans are being sold at a price of Rs 80-90 in Nilgiris itself due to lack of supply. “If one has to sell Ooty beans here, the cost could be more than Rs 110-Rs 120 a kg,” reasons Chandran
Ladies finger is being sold at Rs 40 a kg and is expected to rise further so is broad beans (avarakai) which is now being sold at Rs 40. Even the price of a bunch of corainder leaves, which is in huge demand due to rise in temperature, is sold at Rs 15-Rs 20. In the retail market it is being sold at Rs 30. Lemon has become a luxury with a small piece being sold for Rs 4-Rs 5. A large lemon would cost Rs 8-Rs 10. As vegetable prices are hitting the roof, a trader advises, “They are going to rise further. Kindly stock them and don’t share tomatoes with neighbours.”
Even fruit prices are soaring. The prices of fruits like watermelon, mousambi and oranges which are in demand during the summer have nearly doubled. Watermelon which was being sold at Rs 10 a kg is now being sold at Rs 20. Similarly, oranges, which literally had no takers a few weeks ago, is now being sold at Rs 70 a kg while sweet lime is being sold at Rs 60-65. Market Management Committee member K Jayaraman, a wholesale trader of fruits in Koyambedu, said the prices were bound to soar further.