L. Srikrishna

Cold storage facility a boon for farmers at ‘uzhavar sandhais’

MADURAI: Surplus arrivals of many vegetables have brought down the prices at ‘uzhavar sandhais.’

With Pongal celebrations around, daily markets have been witnessing surplus arrivals, according to officials at the uzhavar sandhais.

Prices of onions, tomatoes and brinjal were ruling lesser by 10 to 15 per cent on Wednesday when compared to prices prevailing a week back.

The number of farmers who come here from far and nearby villages with their produce too has touched 160 at Chokkikulam uzhavar sandhai. Usually, during weekends and prior to festival days, the number of farmers would be higher, they added.

The crowd was very high at Anna Nagar uzhavar sandhai since Wednesday morning. According to the staff, the onion prices (different varieties such as big onions, small onions) were around 18 per kg. What was available at Rs 30 a fortnight ago had fallen by Rs.12 per kg.

Similarly, the prices of potato ranged between Rs.16 and Rs.18 per kg.

The price of tomato was at Rs.20 per kg.

Cold storage facility too has come in handy for the farmers to store their unsold produce at the uzhavar sandhai. The government has installed the value-added facility for the benefit of farmers free of cost.

At least on five days in a week, the storage level was high in the sandhais, the staff said and the farmers sold them on weekends when the crowd was high.

Though the Anaiyur sandhai attracted crowd, it was pretty thin.

Enquiries with the farmers on the reasons for the subdued patronage revealed that there were daily shandies around Anaiyur uzhavar sandhai.

Probably, residents are used to visiting the daily shandies near their dwellings than the recently set up uzhavar sandhai, they noted.

The approach road to the uzhavar sandhai is not motorable, which too in a way discouraged many residents to visit the sandhai, the public complained.

Last week, a tanker lorry fell on the roadside, blocking vehicular movement on the Anaiyur main road, a resident claimed.