Prices of vegetables soar up, citizens displeased in Lahore


‘Radish becomes rare commodity in Shadman Sunday bazaar’

LAHORE: High prices of vegetables are heating up winter season this year and are causing a hole in the consumers’ pockets, Pakistan Today has observed.

The prices of winter vegetables such as green peas, cauliflower, carrot, green chilli and leafy vegetables have not dropped and are being sold at skyrocketing prices. Other seasonal vegetables have also become costlier in the city due to inadequate supply. Summer vegetables except for lady finger and bitter gourd have disappeared from the markets at the onset of winter. Bitter gourd was selling at Rs 85 per kg while lady finger was at Rs 1,200 to 1,400 per kg.

Green peas were being sold at Rs 75 per kg in the retail market while it was being sold at Rs 50-60 in the wholesale market. Mungray were being sold at Rs 90 to 100 per kg in the retail market and the Sunday Bazaar. The price of cauliflower was Rs 40-50 per kg, green chillies reached Rs 75 per kg. Leafy vegetables like coriander, spinach and methi were being sold at Rs 40-50 per kg in the retail market. Radish, an important item for salad, was not seen at all at the Sunday bazaar.

Interestingly, it was present in abundance on the stalls outside the Sunday bazaar at the rate of Rs 30 to 40 per kg. The administration did not take any action against profiteers.

The average price of vegetables was Rs 50 per kg at the Shadman Sunday Bazaar compared to rupees 40 a fortnight ago.

Traders said that winter vegetables including cauliflower, cabbage, beans, radish, and spinach had started to arrive in the markets but the prices were high due to limited supply.

Market Committee Inspector Muhamad Riaz said that the late rains caused some damage and also delayed harvesting of the standing tomato, kharif onion, capsicum and spinach crops, thus impacting their market arrivals. He said that the prices of winter vegetables would reduce in the coming weeks because crops in Punjab are ready and will be supplied to the market.

He added that many vegetable seedbeds were damaged this year due to the dearth of rain that seriously affected the production of early winter vegetables.

Muhammad Irfan, a vegetable vendor at Shadman Sunday bazaar said, “Winter vegetables have started to arrive in the city, but the supply is not enough for the demand.”

He also said the prices of winter vegetables will reduce as soon as the supply starts to increase in the next few weeks after the fog clears up.

Meanwhile, the price of tomatoes and onion which are a staple in every kitchen soared higher in the retail market. The current prices of tomatoes have already gone up to Rs 80 per kg in retail markets. Onions were selling at Rs 46 per kg at the bazaar.