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Bad monsoon, vegetable prices hiked

Bad monsoon, vegetable prices hiked
Highlights

Vegetable prices at Alwal Rythu Bazaar and Monda Market have risen considerably compared to the previous month. On Tuesday, tomatoes were being sold for anywhere between Rs 25 and Rs 30, green peas for Rs 45, capsicum for Rs 38, french beans for Rs 33 and lady fingers for Rs 33. There is no vegetable being sold for Rs 10 or less.

Vegetable prices at Alwal Rythu Bazaar and Monda Market have risen considerably compared to the previous month. On Tuesday, tomatoes were being sold for anywhere between Rs 25 and Rs 30, green peas for Rs 45, capsicum for Rs 38, french beans for Rs 33 and lady fingers for Rs 33. There is no vegetable being sold for Rs 10 or less.

It has been reliably learnt that the supply of Madanapalli (Chittoor) market tomatoes has reduced due to poor monsoon. Moreover the excess supply of vegetables to neighbouring states has lead to a hike in prices of vegetables. Venkat Naryana, a regular customer at Alwal Rythu Bazaar, said, “Normally in winter vegetables are cheap, but this time they are costly. Tomatoes being sold at Rs 25 per kg is alarming. We do not know when the prices will scale down.”

Vegetable vendors at Alwal Rythu Bazaar

Venkatamma, a vegetable vendor, said, “We buy 25 kg of tomato at Bowenpally market at a cost of Rs 550. This excludes Rs 10 towards auto charges and Rs 6 towards hamali totaling to Rs 566.We try to sell the stock at Rs 25 per kg with a profit margin of Rs 1 to 2 per kg. But due to hike in the price of tomato, people have stopped buying the produce in bulk.

Even mass customers like hotels have started purchasing tomatoes at Rs 20 or Rs 22 which is leading to losses. We end up selling the remaining stock at low prices as it is a perishable commodity.” Shakunthala, a farmer from Shamirpet, who sells her farm’s produce at Alwal Rythu Bazaar, said, “We grow vegetables in our farms and come to Rythu Bazaar to sell the produce. We are facing losses as we transport the vegetables from our villages by trucks to the market and take it back. Sometimes we have to stock the produce in our stalls where there is a risk of theft.”

Tomatoes are on high demand

“The government is not taking care of the needs of farmers at Rythu Bazaars and we are experiencing losses. The minimum benchmark sale of vegetables is not assured. Neither is there a minimum earning for our day to day survival. We cannot repay our loans. Our profession is farming and we depend on this only,” she added.

Talking about the deplorable facilities in Rythu Bazaar, Shakunthala said, “There are more than 200 vegetable vendors in Alwal Rythu Bazaar. We have no basic facility of canteen to have a cup of tea and tiffin. Added to the woes, we have no toilet facilities as the existing toilets are not usable and are in bad condition. We request the concerned authorities to fix our problems at the earliest.”

By:Ch Saibaba

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