AHMEDABAD: Tomatoes, which brought despair to farmers earlier this year, have gone farther out of reach of middle-class kitchens.
Tomatoes are selling for Rs 120 per kg in the retail market; the price at the Agriculture Produce Market Committee (APMC) in Jamalpur was Rs 56 on Tuesday. Prices may increase as demand rises.
Prices of several other vegetables have touched Rs 100 per kg or are nearing that mark.
Brinjal’s price has crossed Rs 50 per kg. Prices of ladyfingers, cluster beans, and green beans have gone past the Rs 50 per kg threshold in the retail market.
“Prices of vegetables are skyrocketing because of heavy rains in the city,” said Deepak Patel, the secretary of the APMC. “Whenever there is a long spell of rain in the state, prices increase.”
He said that prices usually stabilise when the water recedes from fields.
He said that the state was banking on tomatoes from Maharashtra and the south because rain has washed away around 25% of crops. But steady demand was increasing prices, he said.
Sources in the APMC said that the demand for the tomatoes will increase as the Shravan month begins in a week for North Indians, and by the end of the month for Gujaratis and Maharashtrians. During Shravan, people avoid onion and garlic and hence the demand for tomatoes and other vegetables shoots up.
It is worth recalling that farmers in the state did not receive good prices for their produce earlier this year; they were forced to throw away the produce on the roads. However, Radheshyam Marwadi, a trader in Memnagar, said that prices are likely to dip later this month. But they will increase again in August and September