R. Jagadeeswara Rao
Anticipated fall has not materialised after new arrivals this month
Prices of brinjal, cauliflower, cabbage come down
BJP suggests steps for price stabilisation
VISAKHAPATNAM: The anticipated fall of prices of vegetables because of new arrivals to the market in January has not materialised.
However, prices of a few vegetables like brinjal, cauliflower and cabbage have come down considerably, bringing some cheer to housewives.
Vegetable price rise is an all pervading problem, the main reason for which is the ever-growing demand for vegetables and the absence of increase in the area under vegetable cultivation, commensurate with the demand.
The area under vegetable cultivation in the State is about 2,30,600 hectares and the annual production is 37,93,700 MTs.
According to officials, there has been virtually no increase in the cultivated area, but the total production has gone up marginally because of improvements in productivity.
Officials here claim that the price of brinjal, which was about Rs.15 a kg some time ago, has come down to Rs. 6 a kg in the market today.
In fact the price in the rural areas is as low as Rs.3 a kg, officials point out.
Similarly the price of cauliflower which was Rs.15 and more a few weeks ago has come down, depending on the size, to around Rs.6 a unit. Similar is the case with the cabbage.
According to a representation submitted by the city unit of BJP to the Assistant Director of Horticulture, S. Ramamohana Rao, prices of vegetable had to come down by about 60 per cent in January because of new arrivals, but that has not happened.
Mr. Ramamohana Rao, however, points out to the increased supplies in the market and the down trend in prices of vegetables and explained to them the steps taken to improve productivity.
Onion still dearer
However, prices of other vegetables continue to be high.
The price of angular gourd and lady’s finger continue to be more than Rs.20 a kg. So also the price of onion which remained at Rs.20 a kg in rythu bazaars. Private traders sell quality onions at Rs.25 and more a kg.
Main supply channels -- Kurnool, Maharshtra and Bangalore -- which have been disrupted because of floods and damage to road network, are yet to be restored.
Vegetables to the city market arrive from the mandals of Bheemunipatnam, Rambilli, Atchyutapuram, Munagapaka, Anakapalle, Pendurthi, Sabbavaram and Anandapuram and also from the agency areas.
BJP city unit president M. Nagendra, in the representation, urged officials to provide incentives like subsidy on seed and other inputs supplied to vegetable growing farmers in the above mandals.
Transport concessions should also be provided. These steps along with providing storage and other marketing facilities would ensure stability of vegetable prices.