Prices of some staple vegetables have begun to fall at the Koyambedu wholesale market on account of higher arrivals and lower demand during the holiday season.
On Saturday, a measure of normalcy began to return to the market. During the Pongal holidays, the wholesale market received only 50-60% of the daily average in terms of arrivals, said traders.
Onions, that touched a record high, are now priced between ₹45 and ₹60 a kg at the market. Small onions cost up to ₹110 a kg, depending on quality. The market has received 50 truckloads of onions daily, due to good yield, from Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka, the traders said.
Though most vegetables have become affordable, sales have been dull, and only 50% of the produce got sold. Overall, there was a 20% drop in sales compared to Pongal last year, said S. Chandran, president, Koyambedu Wholesale Market Licensed Merchants’ Association.
Ladies’ finger, chayote (chow chow in Tamil) and green chillies were some of the cheap vegetables, priced below ₹10 a kg, at the wholesale market. “We expect sales to pick up from Monday, after the holiday season,” he said.
According to some traders, several vegetables are now priced upto ₹40 a kg. Beans and broad beans, that are usually costly, are priced at ₹35-40 a kg. Drumsticks remain the costliest, selling for ₹130-170 a kg, depending on quality.
P. Sukumar, treasurer of the association, said prices had decreased by 20% in the past few days. “Vegetables such as cucumber, cabbage and radish, that have high water content, have less demand during winter, and are priced below ₹15 a kg,” he said.
The cost of vegetables such as carrots, drumsticks and onions will dip further in a fortnight, after fresh arrivals hit the market. Prices will remain stable till the summer, Mr. Sukumar added.