The high temperatures over the past few months are burning holes in citizens’ pockets, with the price of vegetables increasing as supplies fall.
Traders at the wholesale agriculture produce market committee (APMC) in Vashi said the high temperatures over the past months and have hit the supply of vegetables, and prices have risen by 20-22% from the last month.
“The prices of vegetables have increased by 20% as compared with the last month. The major reason is shortage of supply. Our profit margins have fallen drastically,” said Kamlesh Gupta, a retail vegetable seller in Vashi. “Beans are selling at a record high of Rs 200 per kg, from the Rs 80 per kg in the month of May,” he said.
Tomatoes, being sold at Rs 10 to Rs 12 per kg in May, are priced at Rs 16-18 per kg in the wholesale market. The price of cauliflower has risen to Rs 14-16 per kg from the Rs 10-12 per kg last month, while cabbage, which was being sold at Rs 2-3 per kg, is now selling at Rs 6-12 per kg.
Against the usual 600 supply vehicles that arrive in the market daily, only about 400-450 tempos and trucks are turning up, and the number is likely to fall further, said traders.
“The prices have risen in the past two weeks and will continue to rise for some time. There is a lot of uncertainty over the monsoon, and hence it is difficult to say when the prices will begin to fall,” said Shivaji Dhembre, a wholesale trader.
Residents are feeling the pinch.
“It’s very difficult for the common man to keep paying such high prices. I shudder to think what will happen if the monsoon is deficient,” said Divya Nampally, 35, a resident of Vashi.