The price of tomatoes has soared in Mumbai, reaching as much as Rs 100 per KG in the wholesale market, among the highest prices ever reported. Borivali BMC market, Dadar and Vashi wholesale vegetable market are some of the largest mandis in Mumbai, and according to reports, the highest prices previously reported was Rs 98 per kilo.
The market exports to several states in the country. With a sharp drop in the arrival of tomatoes at the wholesale market, the retail price of an important kitchen staple has skyrocketed.
Prices have touched Rs 100 per kg in many parts of the city and traders say there will be no respite for at least the next 20 days. As if that were not enough, retail prices of other vegetables too have doubled, as crops have been damaged due to unseasonal rain in vegetable-growing areas.
Shankar Pingle, director of the vegetable market at the Agriculture Produce Market (APMC) in Vashi told Afternoon Voice that, “The meagre supply has pushed up the price of tomatoes. The plunge in supply began in September-end and unseasonal rains in many parts of the state made the situation worse.”
There has been a sharp rise in retail tomato prices in major cities of South India due to widespread moderate to heavy rainfalls during the northeast monsoon since the first week of November due to frequent formations of low-pressure areas in the Bay of Bengal, or cyclonic circulation in the Arabian Sea. As a result, the tomato crop has been damaged causing a tight supply.
According to traders, the supply has dipped by 40 to 50 per cent. “Due to excess rainfall in September and due to unseasonal rainfall, the sowing of the new crop was also delayed by another trader from APMC. According to the traders, the reason is the unseasonal rainfall in vegetable-growing areas of the state especially Nashik, Pune and Satara. Brinjal and cauliflower, which were available for around Rs 40 per kg now cost Rs 80 per kg. Spinach and methi cost Rs 20 to Rs 30 per bunch.”
Mumbai, including Navi Mumbai, needs around 300 tonnes of tomatoes every day, and the majority of the demand is met from Nashik and Satara. At present, the market is receiving one-third of the daily requirement, about 100 tonnes per day. In the meantime, the prices of green and leafy vegetables have soared in the market.