Retail tomato prices increased to Rs 70 per kg due to tight supply of the key kitchen staple during the lean period, a trade report said.
Prices have firmed up Rs 10 per kg on a weekly basis since June 1, not only in the unorganised retail markets but also at Safal retail vegetable outlets of Mother Dairy and e-tailers Bigbasket and Grofers.
Bigbasket is selling tomatoes in the range of Rs 60-66 per kg and Grofers at Rs Rs 53-55 per kg on Sunday. In the unorganised markets, tomatoes were available around Rs 70 per kg depending on the quality and locality, traders said.
They said prices are ruling high even in the wholesale mandis where arrivals are not robust in the last few weeks from the producing states. Traders also mentioned that rise in COVID-19 cases in producing states of Southern India has restricted harvesting of the crop in some pockets.
The consumer affairs ministry data shows a sharp increase in prices of tomato not only in Delhi but also in the neighbouring states. Last week, Consumer Affairs Minister Ram Vilas Paswan said the price volatility in tomatoes was due to the lean season and the commodity being highly perishable.
Prices of tomatoes normally shoot up during the lean period as past five year’s data show. Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthan, Jharkhand, Punjab, Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Jammu and Kashmir and Arunachal Pradesh are the states with deficit tomato production in the country. They depend on surplus producing states for supplies.
India produces about 19.73 million tonnes of tomato annually, while the consumption is about 11.51 million tonnes, as per the official data.