The fruit is preferred for its high nutritional value and taste. Bakeries and dry fruit shop owners on the ever-busy stretches at Patamata, Benz Circle, M.G. Road and One Town, are selling dry fruits and catering to the needs of the devout.

Sale of dates imported from Gulf countries registered an upsurge in the city, with many buyers, especially those observing fast during the month of Ramzan, preferring it for its high nutritional value and rich taste.

Traders are selling more than half-a-dozen varieties of dates with costs ranging from Rs. 100 to Rs. 1,600 per kg. Sales registered at least 40 per cent increase after the Ramzan month began.

“We are now selling one-and-half cartons per day containing a dozen small boxes weighing half a kilogram as against four cartons sold in a week,” says T. Bala Suresh of Sri Matha Dry Fruits Centre.

The response has been encouraging during the last few days, he claims. Dealers import these dry fruits from Oman, Iran and other Arabian countries to Mumbai. Shopkeepers from Vijayawada either directly buy dates in Mumbai or in Hyderabad. Traders place orders as and when the stock exhausts as the fruit is perishable.

Bakeries and dry fruit shop owners on the ever-busy stretches at Patamata, Benz Circle, M.G. Road and One Town, are selling dry fruits and catering to the needs of the devout.

The most sought-after variety of dates is ‘Ajwa’ followed by ‘Medjoul’ and ‘Kimia’. As ‘Ajwa’ and ‘Medjoul’ dates cost more, many prefer to have ‘Kimia’ variety, says New Modern Supermarket manager Mohammed Shoaib.

“Dates are an intrinsic part of the diet of people in the Muslim community during the Ramzan month. The devout consume them because of its high nutritional value. No ‘Iftar’ (fast-breaking) is complete without the juicy dates,” he explains. Following increase in demand, many people, especially youngsters, take up the business of supplying and selling the fruit as it fetches them additional income.

More In: Vijayawada