You can expect vegetable prices in the wholesale market to drop in the first week of August as the new crop could arrive a month earlier this year, traders said.
Fresh vegetables from different parts of Maharashtra normally come to the city by mid-August, but owing to the heavy rainfall in June, the produce is likely to be up for sale in the first week of the month.
This is likely to bring down the prices of cabbage, cauliflower, brinjal, french beans, tomatoes and green peas — all vegetables that are in high demand.
“The price of green peas has already started coming down because of the arrival of the Belgaum produce. Similarly, the supply of all vegetables such as ladyfinger, cluster beans and brinjal is likely to increase gradually thanks to the timely rainfall,” said Shankar Pingale, director, APMC vegetable market.
Experts said April-May-June is the off-season for vegetables because of water scarcity, but after it rains, vegetables start making their way to the market and prices drop.
However, this year, vegetable prices have remained high in the retail market even though the supply was high and the state receiving abundant rainfall.
To control prices in the open market, the state government set up 106 centres that sell vegetables at wholesale prices. But this move has hardly affected retail prices, which remain high in localities that don’t have these centres.
The government is now planning to expand these centers as soon as possible.
“Apart from the different districts of Maharashtra, we received a large vegetable supply from other states such as Punjab, Himachal Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh. The transportation cost for vegetables coming from there is high, so once the Maharashtra supply starts, the prices are bound to come down,” said an official from the agriculture and marketing department, requesting anonymity as he is not allowed to speak to the media.