The late and erratic monsoon this year has driven vegetable prices up by many notches, with traders in Delhi’s wholesale markets on Sunday saying “drop in rates is unlikely before August”.
“Insufficient rainfall has destroyed crops. Further disruptions could worsen the problem,” Rajinder Kumar Prasad, Chairman of the Agricultural Produce Market Committee (APMC) in Azadpur, said.
Anil Malhotra, an APMC member, said the prices were unlikely to drop before August. “Even if it rains adequately now, it will take some time for the situation to reach normality.”
“For instance, price of the highly perishable tomatoes has been high this season as supply between July 1 and July 15 was 2,000 tonne less than the previous year. Similarly, the wholesale market has received 1,000 tonne of potato less than 2011,” a trader said.
The retail price of tomato has seen a steady rise from Rs 20 per kg to Rs 50 over the past couple of days. Likewise, potato prices have gone up by Rs 5 and Rs 10 per kg.
“We expect supply from Bangalore and Maharashtra in the next few days. Hope it will bring down prices,” the trader said.
In Mother Dairy’s fruit and vegetable outlets (Safal), tomato price has increased from Rs 20 to 48 per kg over the past 10 days. “Sales have taken a hit. Those who used to buy two kg of tomatoes are buying one now,” a Safal vendor near IP Extension said.