BENGALURU: With soaring lemon prices, an essential to beat summer heat, now tomatoes have become costly with a kilo costing Rs 75-80 in retail. The inflation and low yield have not just hit domestic consumption but also affected export. Every kitchen’s most essential ingredient now costs Rs 62- 64 a kilo in Hopcoms outlets. The price has shot up by Rs 10 in a day, forcing many households to skip the staple in salad and strike it out from their diet plan.
Hotels and restaurant associations are already contemplating are considering increasing the cost of their items as it is essential for preparations like sambars, rasam and other curries along with skyrocketing cost of commercial gas cylinders.
According to Hopcoms, the cost of tomatoes has shot up not just because of the fluctuations in season and the extremes, but also because of the price issues. “Last month, a kilo tomatoes were sold at Rs 2-3, so farmers could not maintain and sustain it. They were forced to throw it on the road as they were unable to find labourers. But when the supply stopped, the demand continued to rise and hence there is a sudden rise in cost,” the official said.
He also pointed out that during April-May the rates increase, but they would shoot up to Rs 50-55, now it is climbing towards Rs 80, which is a matter of concern. Narayan Gowda, a tomato grower, admitted that the prices will continue to be on the higher side for the next 2-3 months till fresh crops hit the market. Tomatoes take three months to ripen. The prime tomato growing regions in the state are Kolar, Mulbagal, KGF, Chintamani, Sidlaghatta, Chikkaballapur and Doddaballapur.