NATION

Decrease In Vegetable Price Worries Farmers

“I use to take home $350 from a truckload of vegetable sales, now I am going home with only $110 and in deducting the diesel cost, I am left with $90.”
02 Aug 2021 10:27
Decrease In Vegetable Price Worries Farmers
Sigatoka Valley Road farmers; Dinesh Varma, 46 and Ashneel Kumar, 36, hoping to make some sale on July 27, 2021. Photo: Ronald Kumar.

The effects of COVID-19 lockdown and continuous decrease of vegetable retail prices have started to show on the faces of Sigatoka Valley Road farmers.

Farmer, Dinesh Varma, 46, said most farmers were losing out on their regular Suva market customers because of the lockdown.

“More than two months of lockdown at Wainadoi has left us no choice but to sell our produce at the Navua Market,” Mr Varma said.

He said the large supply of vegetables at most municipal markets by semi-commercial farmers and the announcement of a year-long stall fee waiver contributed to the fall in vegetable prices.

“A bag of eggplant that was sold for $70 last month, was sold for $25 last week and today I sold it for $10 a bag,” he said.

He said for any farmer the hardest thing to do was to throw away their produce.

He said he had no choice but to sell at a minimal cost and return home with at least some cash.

“I use to take home $350 from a truckload of vegetable sales, now I am going home with only $110 and in deducting the diesel cost, I am left with $90.”

Another affected farmer, Ashneel Kumar, 36, said the current vegetable price was shocking.

Mr Kumar said with the current rate, he doesn’t know what to do with his five acres of green cabbage, which was ready for harvesting.

He said many people had started with backyard gardening, semi-commercial and commercial farming following the effects of COVID-19 last year.

He said these farmers were now flooding the market with vegetables resulting in the price drop.

While the farmers understood that the drop in vegetable prices would bring relief to Fijians affected by the current pandemic, they were hoping even with the minimal sales that they would still be able to survive.

Edited by Losirene Lacanivalu

Feedback: ronaldk@fijisun.com.fj



Five Squares 4th Birthday


Get updates from the Fiji Sun, handpicked and delivered to your inbox.


By entering your email address you're giving us permission to send you news and offers. You can opt-out at any time.


Tower Insurance
FNPF App
Covid 19 - SPC
Fiji Sun Instagram
Subscribe-to-Newspaper