But fruits are burning a hole in middle-class pockets

Finally, here’s news that’ll help your already strained monthly budget. Vegetable prices are falling, with most showing a substantial dip over the past two weeks.

Even compared to just a week ago, many vegetables have shown a roughly 20 per cent decline, Hopcoms officials say. This decline they attribute to an increase in supply of vegetables, and not any seasonal factors. “Last week, the amount of vegetables coming in had decreased, so there was a natural spike in prices. Starting Saturday, prices have declined in the market.”

The sharpest price decline was seen in tomato (down by 50 per cent to Rs. 25 a kg within a week) and cluster beans (Rs. 35 to 20) and lady’s finger or okra is down by Rs. 10. (See table.)

Fruits still pricey

But the price of fruits — already considered quite the luxury for most middle-income families — has increased, though a lot of this has to do with their seasonality. This could also be due to the increase in demand due to Ramzan season, when fruits are part of the iftaar tradition (when Muslims break their daylong fast).

Watermelon, for instance, is up from Rs. 16 last week to Rs. 25 a kg. “It’s a simple supply-demand thing. This is true of especially fruits such as watermelon that are very popular during this season,” said a Hopcoms official.

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