Tomato prices are showing an upward trend due to supply crunch following heavy rains in southern and western India with retail prices ruling at as high as Rs 100 a kg in Malda, Aizawl and Imphal. As per data compiled by the consumers affairs ministry, the average retail price of tomato stood at Rs 50 a kilo in the country on Tuesday, while the maximum price was Rs 100.
The ministry tracks retail prices of 22 essential commodities (potato, tomato, and onion) in 114 market centres spread across India. The data further showed that average price of onion and potato was Rs 35 per kilogram, while maximum price was Rs 60 per kg for the two kitchen essentials.
Tomato prices per kilo in four metro cities of Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata and Chennai were Rs 63, Rs 68, Rs 80 and Rs 50, respectively, the data showed. However, hawkers and street vendors were selling vegetable at higher prices than mentioned in the government data. The tomato crop in southern India and Maharashtra is believed to be less this time as farmers have apparently grown in less area due to uncertainty over the price for their produce during the COVID-19 pandemic. Meanwhile, the government on Monday banned the export of all varieties of onions with immediate effect, a move aimed at increasing availability and curbing prices of the commodity in the domestic market.
Forty per cent of the country's total onion crop is produced in the kharif season and the rest during the rabi season.