Madurai

Consumers throng markets

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Consumers were busy buying vegetables, fruits, flowers, sugarcane and turmeric, among other essential goods, to celebrate Pongal, the harvest festival.

A bundle of sugarcane (with 15 sticks), which was sold anywhere between ₹ 350 and ₹450 till Monday, fell to ₹ 200 on Tuesday as lorries loaded with sugarcane continued to arrive while the demand came down drastically.

“We expect this price to sustain till Wednesday,” said N. Murugan, a sugarcane trader having his roadside makeshift shop in Tirunelveli.

Arrival of palmyra tubers from various parts of Tirunelveli and Ramanathapuram district ensured the sale of the produce at ₹ 100 for 25 tubers since last week.

As tubers from Ramanathapuram district were sold along with palmyrah seeds, known for its sweet kernel, they were close to consumers’ hearts than the local variety.

Prices of vegetables have touched an all-time high. Consumers had to pay ₹ 140 for a kg of shallot, ₹ 120 for brinjal, ₹ 48 for potato, ₹ 160 for mango, ₹ 70 for bellary onion, ₹ 60 for beans despite decent arrival from farms. However, they did not deter consumers from buying vegetables, as huge crowd could be seen buying vegetables in all markets including farmers’ markets at Maharaja Nagar, Kandigaiperi and Melapalayam.

As the cold weather prevailing this season would hit jasmine yield, the most sought-after flower was sold at ₹ 3,500 a kg and the price is expected to move further up.

“Against usual supply of 2 tonnes of jasmine a day, we’re getting just 20 kg a day and you can imagine the demand for this flower, especially during festival seasons. I won’t be surprised if the price crosses ₹ 4,000 a kg on Tuesday night,” said flower seller I. Narayanan of Palayamkottai. Those who had to buy ‘pichi poo’ too had to spend a lot as it was sold for ₹ 1,800 per kg.

Sale of goats in the weekly market at Melapalyam was brisk on Tuesday and the demand for meat would be high on Thursday. Farmers, who had brought goats to be sold in the Melapalayam weekly market, returned home on a happy note as they fetched high price for these domestic animals. “Goats, which were sold for ₹ 8,000 till last week, were sold for ₹ 10,000 and above. On Tuesday, as they are expected to sell one kg of meat with bone for ₹ 700 and above,” said a farmer who had sold his two goats for ₹ 21,000, which is a big money for him ahead of ‘Pongal’ celebrations.

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Printable version | Jan 29, 2020 2:12:21 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Madurai/consumers-throng-markets/article30568739.ece

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