There is no profitable price for any vegetable, especially tomatoes in the Srinvasapura taluk's markets. Farmers are facing big losses because their crops are rotting. DH photo
There is no profitable price for any vegetable, especially tomatoes in the Srinvasapura taluk's markets. Farmers are facing big losses because their crops are rotting.
Tomato farmers are not even able to recover the cost of harvesting and transporting their produce to the market. Consequently, they have let the season's harvest rot in the plant itself.
Monkeys and other pests keep destroying tomato crops. But farmers ignore them because they have given up all hopes of recovering their losses given the current market reality.
A 15 kg box of tomatoes fetches Rs 50 to Rs 100. With this sort of price, farmers are not able to recover their investments.
If they decide to sell it, they need money for plucking labour, loading and unloading charges, transportation, box rentals and the 10% commission they have to pay middlemen.
Also the prices of other vegetables like beans, beetroot, brinjal, cabbage, raddish have all fallen steeply and customers have a whole array of cheap vegetables to choose from. The sellers are selling not by the kilogram, but my number of tomatoes.
Farmers say this is common during the flat bean (Avarekai) season. Because Avarekai is seasonal and is a specialty vegetable, customers tend to buy and use a lot of it in the season. Consequently all other vegetables see a glut in the market and a steep drop in prices.
However, even Avarekai (flat bean) did not get good prices this year. Farmers who had grown this vegetable disposed off their produce in markets as soon as possible and washed their hands off it before the season ended.