They say an apple a day keeps the doctor away. Instead the high prices of apple kept the fruit away from public in the last few years. But thanks to sliding prices the fruit is now widely available across the city - and in abundance.

While the soaring prices of onion and vegetable prices are forcing the people to shed tears, it is otherwise with apples.

“There is a good yield and huge stocks are arriving in the market from Himachal Pradesh. Hence, there is a drastic slip in its prices,” said Tajuddin, a fruit merchant at the Gaddianaram fruit market.

Cheap rates

A box containing about 120 apples costs anything between Rs.600 and Rs.1,200 - depending upon its quality whereas in the retail market the apples are sold between Rs.5 and Rs.15 each. “In the last three years there was low yield and the price was high but it is just the opposite this season. The last time we sold an apple as cheap as Rs.5 was three years ago,” Yousuf, a fruit vendor at Charminar says.

Around 30 truck loads of apples arrive at Gaddianaram fruit market from various parts of Himachal Pradesh everyday and each carries about 600 to 800 apple boxes. Apart from this around 10 truck loads of apples are unloaded at places such as S.R. Nagar, Charminar, Mehdipatnam, Ameerpet and BHEL everyday.

Trend to continue

Fruit merchants expect the trend to continue till the beginning of the 11-day Ganesh festival scheduled in the first week of September.

“There will be high demand for the fruit in the festive season, and there could be a slight increase in the price,” says Munneruddin, a trader at Moazamjahi market.

Around the same time the yield from Jammu and Kashmir will also find its way to the market and would continue till the December month.

“There are reports that even the fruit from Jammu and Kashmir will be cheaper this year compared to the previous years due to high yield,” says another fruit trader.

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