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Tomatoes squashed out of Pune kitchens as prices hit Rs100/kg

A slow start to the monsoon and low supply have pushed tomato prices sky high

pune Updated: Jul 12, 2017 12:50 IST
Abhay Khairnar
Abhay Khairnar
Hindustan Times, Pune
Cost of tomatoes in the city has seen a drop in purchase. Tomatoes are mainly arriving from Manchar, Narayangaon, Satara and Ahmednagar in the Pune market.(Rahul Raut/HT PHOTO)

The prices of tomato, a key kitchen staple in every household, has reached between Rs 90 and Rs 100 per kg due to delayed rain in parts of Maharashtra affecting the crop.

Last month, price of tomatoes were between Rs 5 to Rs 10 per kg, creating some financial problem for farmers. According to vegetable traders, prices of tomatoes have increased in the past fortnight mainly due to a shortage of supply. The Agriculture Produce Market Committee’s union president Vilas Bhujbal told Hindustan Times that the prices are at an all-time high in this season. “As the supply is very low, it has affected the prices.”

The sharp rise in the prices of important vegetables has forced many citizens to keep tomatoes out off their kitchens. “As tomato prices have shot up, they have brought consumption down which is a regular staple in the kitchen,” says Neelam Desai, a self-employed woman.

Another lady, Alka Bhosale, said prices are very high but irony is that the farmers are not getting the benefit of high prices. Considering the prices, her family is purchasing tomatoes only when it is necessary .Bhujbal said that hardly 3,000 boxes of tomatoes which are around 20kg arrived at the wholesale market which is located at Gultekadi. The trend is likely to continue till the end of the month as there are no chances of prices coming down till supply improves.

Bhujbal also said that the situation is the same in all Agricultural Produce Market Committees in Maharashtra. The prices are shooting up in all cities including Mumbai, Nashik and Aurangabad.Maharashtra has enough production of tomatoes and the state does not depend on others states for the crop, Bhujbal said. Wholesale tomato prices in the Pune market are Rs 500 to Rs 550 per 10 kg.

A retailer, Shelar Bhajiwale from Sahakarnagar, said that many customers keep asking the price, but don’t purchase it. Even those who were procuring at least 1 kg tomato are hardly buying 250 gms of tomatoes.

Wholesaler Vilas Bhujbal said that the increase in tomato prices is normal during the monsoon season. This is because stocks get spoiled in the rainy season. The shelf life of tomatoes is hardly three to four days. However, this year, prices have increased as compared to previous years. Tomatoes are mainly arriving from Manchar, Narayangaon, Satara and Ahmednagar in the Pune market.

First Published: Jul 12, 2017 12:49 IST