CHENNAI: The price of tomato in the city, which recently fell to Rs 40 a kg, has shot up again with the vegetable now selling at Rs 90 a kg at the Koyambedu wholesale market. Traders said the price is likely to breach Rs 100 on Sunday as the supply has reduced drastically.
“Today, we received 40 trucks of tomatoes. The supply was, however, equivalent to only 30 trucks. With the prices offered in Andhra and Karnataka being almost the same as in here, the suppliers feel they are at a loss,” said M Thiagarajan, president of Koyambedu Vegetable, Fruit and Flower Sellers’ Welfare Association.
Abdul Khader, secretary of Koyambedu Vegetable Wholesale Merchants’ Association, said vegetables like brinjal and ladies finger are also selling above Rs 100 at the market. While one kg of the ujala variety of brinjal, and ladies finger cost Rs 120, the price of onions has spiralled up to Rs 40 to Rs 50 a kg. With the wholesale prices on an upward curve, the vegetables are sold in the retail markets in the city at astronomical prices.
Retail traders bear the brunt as veggies go waste
While tomato is priced over Rs 120, brinjal and ladies finger are priced at over Rs 150. “The entire south India has been impacted by the rains. Until fresh crops arrive, we have to live with these prices,” said Abdul. Bharathi, a homemaker, said it is difficult to cope up with these prices.
“First, it was Covid-19 resulting in loss of income. Now, with the rains triggering price rise of essential commodities, how will we live?” she asked. Many households have cut down on buying vegetables. The cost of vegetables also impacted retail traders who feel they are losing out on the margins as most of the vegetables go waste with people buying less. The price of tomatoes, which skyrocketed after the rains, had been brought down after 60 tonnes of stocks from north India reached the wholesale market a few week ago.