Veggie crunch continues

Anvita Srivastava
Monday, 13 May 2019

Shabbir Hussain, a tomato farmer in Yedgaon, said, “Nowadays, temperature is going beyond 40 degrees, due to which tomato crops are drying up. A lot of farmers use sprinklers during afternoon to reduce the temperature by at least 1 to 3 degrees.”

PUNE: In Gultekadi Market Yard, supply of tomatoes has reduced to around 40 to 45 per cent as compared to last week. The wholesale price of tomatoes has also shot up from Rs 10 to Rs 20 per kg. Supply of vegetables such as French beans, bottle gourd, bitter gourd, okra and carrots has also gone down.

Shriram Gahave, President, Vegetables Growers Association of India, feels that soaring temperature and water scarcity are major reasons for less supply. He said, “An ideal temperature at the time of flowering is 34 degrees Celsius, whereas nowadays temperature is spiking to 45 degrees Celsius. There is also less water availability, which contributes to the low supply.”

Shabbir Hussain, a tomato farmer in Yedgaon, said, “Nowadays, temperature is going beyond 40 degrees, due to which tomato crops are drying up. A lot of farmers use sprinklers during afternoon to reduce the temperature by at least 1 to 3 degrees.”

“But there are many who do not have the equipment, and their crops are getting damaged. However, once the temperature decreases by the end of this month and monsoon arrives, situation will be better as production will increase,” added Hussain.

Swikar Badhe, a  farmer from Narayangaon who grows tomato and French beans, said, “At the time of flowering in tomato, ideal temperature should be around 35 degrees. However, currently temperature is going up to 41 degrees, which damages the crops. There is also less amount of water, which is another reason for less production of tomatoes.”

“Increasing temperature and less water are major reasons for the reduced production of French beans, as they also require a pleasant climate. However, in the recent times, we have seen the demand for French beans has reduced, and there is no stability in its market price as well. So a lot of farmers have stopped growing French beans due to uncertainty in prices,” added Badhe.

PRICES RISE
- There is also a  20-30 per cent dip in the supply of French beans and the wholesale prices have shot up from Rs 80 to Rs 120 per kg.
- However, vegetables such as potatoes, onions, garlic and cucumber supply has increased, whereas supply of leafy vegetables continues to see a dip.

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