Salem/Dharmapuri: The price of tomato has increased from 20 to 50 in retail markets in Salem and Dharmapuri districts. Farmers have attributed drop in production due to heatwave in April and May and the uptick in the price to unexpected rainfall in June.
President of the Salem District Farmers’ Club Federation S Jayaraman said the retail price of 1kg of tomato has increased from 20 to 50.He hinted that the price may continue to rise in the coming days.
Tomatoes are cultivated on approximately 12,000 acres in Salem and Krishnagiri districts. The main tomato cultivation areas are Mecheri and Vazhapadi in Salem district, and Rayakottai in Krishnagiri district. Tomatoes cultivated in these areas are sent to wholesale markets in Pollachi, Coimbatore, Oddanchatram, Thalaivasal and Koyambedu.
Usually, a 27kg of tomato crate is sold for 300 in the wholesale market and 500 in the retail market.
“But now, the price has skyrocketed to 1,000 in the wholesale market and 1,350 in the retail market,” P K Jamuna Rani, a retail merchant from the Salem VOC market, said. Prices of tomato have increased because of the marriage season as well, she said.
Jamuna Rani said the VOC market used to get 10,000 bags of tomatoes daily, but now it has decreased to 4,000 bags.
Residents have urged the state government to take steps to bring down the price and set up stalls to sell tomatoes at affordable rates.

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