Prices have come down as sales were lower than usual earlier this week; customers stock up

City residents who visited vegetable markets on Friday were in for a surprise, as several vegetables were cheaper than they have been over the past four days.

The Koyambedu wholesale market witnessed an increase in sales on the eve of Deepavali, as several customers made last-minute purchases ahead of the festival.

Traders at the wholesale market said that prices have come down, as earlier this week, there were not many customers, and sales of produce had been limited. Thanks to this, the price of several vegetables, including onions, dipped on Friday said M. Thyagarajan, a wholesale tomato merchant.

The low demand has sent the prices of even expensive vegetables such as drumsticks and beans tumbling.

The price dip at the wholesale market was reflected at many retail pockets across the city as well. Padma Rajan, a resident of Mogappair, said that onions that cost Rs. 65 per kg four days ago were priced at Rs. 56 a kg on Friday.

“I bought more onions and tomatoes as they were cheaper. The cost of tomatoes was Rs. 38 a kg, Rs. 8 cheaper than they were on Wednesday,” she said.

Several retailers also saw at least 20 per cent more sales than usual.

M. Palanisamy, a retailer in Aminjikarai, said several customers bought large quantities of vegetables as the retail price had come down by Rs. 5 per kg.

Onion prices may fall further in about month’s time as new crops are getting ready to be harvested, traders said.

“We are managing at present with the produce from Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka. Only 10 lorry loads of onions are being transported from Nasik to the market daily,” said V.R. Soundararajan, another wholesale trader.

On the diesel price hike (0.50 paise per litre since Thursday night), wholesale traders at Koyambedu said that it would take a few more days for the increase to impact the cost of vegetables.

Transporters had recently hiked freight charges and a decision on a further hike would be taken after the festival, they said.

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