Nagpur: The aam aadmi who is raving about the inflated tomato prices has more coming up in his kitty! Going in sync with the prices of tomatoes, other vegetables are also going on the higher end of prices.
As the tomatoes are commanding the prices between Rs 80 and Rs 100, depending on its gavrani and angrezi breed, vegetables too are stagnant at around Rs 40-50 a kg.
But the tomatoes
“I have been here for the past 13 years, and it hasn’t touched this rate before,” says Ser, who says that Rs 60 a kilo used to be the highest. Ser used to buy nearly six crates from the traders bringing tomatoes from Hyderabad and Bengaluru, but now buys only three crates.
The customers too seem to have lowered their purchase of tomatoes. Sharayu Kadu’s two-member household in Manish Nagar used to require more than 3 kg of tomatoes every week, which she has now cut to 1 kg. “Tomatoes are of regular use. If prices increase, I’ll limit its quantity further but cannot do away with it,” she said.
Pav bhaji regulars haven’t had to part with the most desired dish in the monsoon as the food carts and restaurants have managed to keep the prices unchanged.
“We still order the required 40 kg tomatoes as we used to. And the customer base is till the same. We mitigate the losses through the sale of other dishes like pulao, dal, sabzi,” says Bawarsingh Rajput, who owns Shrinath Pav bhaji Hut, a popular eatery opposite VCA stadium. Rajput expects the prices to normalize after Diwali and rules out the idea of using packaged puree, as it would change the taste of his dish.
Nandkishore Gaur, commission agent at Kalamna Market, says that the wholesale rate of tomatoes has come down since the past two days — from Rs 1,700 for 26 kg to Rs 1,400 for the same amount. “For every Rs100 worth of tomatoes, I charge Rs 6. Sometimes, in order to keep the vegetables coming, I reduce my price by Rs 3. We have to keep going whatever may come,” he says.
Per kilo, 2-3 tomatoes usually are not fit for selling, adding to the sellers’ woes, says Govind Shah, who has been selling at Kalamna Market. “Tomatoes are not the only vegetables with high prices. Though not as pricey, other vegetables have also become slightly more expensive than their usual rate,” he says.