Tomato Prices Surge in Pune Markets Due to Supply Shortage

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Pune, 15th June 2024: Tomato prices have surged steeply in both wholesale and retail markets across Pune due to a sharp decline in supply, confirmed an official from the Narayangaon tomato market.

The impact of this scarcity is evident in retail markets, where prices have soared to between Rs 60 and Rs 80 per kilogram, varying with size and quality. At the wholesale level, crates containing 20 kilograms of tomatoes now fetch between Rs 700 and Rs 900, a stark contrast to the Rs 150 per crate price observed in March.

Market analysts and farmers anticipate further price hikes until fresh stocks replenish supplies in the coming weeks. The extreme heatwave sweeping through Maharashtra has severely hampered tomato plantations, exacerbating the supply shortage.

Sharad Gongade, secretary of the Narayangaon market, expressed concerns, stating, “Daily tomato crate arrivals have plummeted from 50,000-60,000 during April and May to just 10,000-11,000 now. This reduction has naturally driven prices upwards in our market.”

Narayangaon market, a pivotal hub receiving tomatoes from Beed, Ahmednagar, and neighboring districts, supplies extensively to Mumbai and beyond, facilitating broader regional distribution.

Another market official cautioned, “We anticipate prices crossing the Rs 1,000 per crate mark soon.” Meanwhile, Pune’s Market Yard, overseen by the Agriculture Produce Market Committee (APMC), has also reported diminished tomato supplies, leading to cost escalations in local retail sectors.

Dipak D, a commission agent at Market Yard, highlighted the dramatic shift in prices, noting, “After dropping to Rs 30 per kilogram during summer, top-quality tomatoes are now commanding Rs 80 per kilogram. We foresee prices exceeding Rs 100 per kilogram imminently.”

Local consumers are feeling the pinch of these rising prices, with many expressing concerns about their monthly budgets.

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As the tomato market grapples with this shortage-driven price surge, stakeholders anticipate ongoing challenges until production levels stabilize in the near future.