MYSURU: With prices of tomatoes skyrocketing owing to poor supply, traders from Tamil Nadu and Kerala have started visiting farms in Mysuru and Chamarajanagar districts to purchase the produce directly from farmers by offering them remunerative rates.
The main reason for this is the wedding season in these two states is fast approaching and the demand for tomato and other vegetables is rising with each passing day.
Farmers, especially in Gundlupet and Yelandur taluks in Chamarajanagar district, are now making brisk business with traders paying them more than the prices offered at APMC yards.
This, according to market observers, is a win-win situation for both farmers and traders as they need not pay commission to agents and other charges at APMC yards. Both the seller and buyer save Rs 8,000 as commission for a transaction of Rs 1 lakh.
The farmers admitted that they have sold tomatoes for Rs 80 a kg and a 26-kg box for more than Rs 2,000. According to traders, tomato prices may slightly come down in the next few days as transport of vegetables from Karnataka to north India has been affected due to heavy rains there. Traders have started procuring fine tomatoes for Rs 80 a kg at Terakanambi, Bommlapura and Punjanjuru villages in Chamarajanagar district. Many have made advance payments to farmers so that they won’t sell the produce to others.
Mahadev, a tomato grower, said the prices of tomato have skyrocketed as many farmers have lost their crop to black stem, blight, and fusarium wilt diseases. The scorching summer also had its adverse impact on the crop. Nearly 60% of the crop has been damaged.
He said farmers in his village have been forced to guard their farms at night now in view of increasing cases of theft of tomatoes. Farmers, who have also cultivated rose onions (small ones) in the two districts, are also making money with prices touching Rs 90 to Rs 100 a kg.
Rs 2,100 PER 15-KG BOX IN KOLAR APMC YARD
Prices of tomato have reached an all-time high with a 15-kg box selling for Rs 2,100 at Kolar APMC yard, which is the second biggest market in Asia, on Tuesday. The lowest price was Rs 550 a box.