Hike in prices of fruits and vegetables in Bengaluru due to restricted access

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Over the last week with imposed lockdown led to limited access to fruits and vegetables, thereby having a hike in their prices.
With the revised guidelines, the state government has extended the time limit for the pushcart vendors and also the operation hours of HOPCOMs and other such shop. Though given had issued the order to not hike the prices, the vendors have increased the price, but, wholesale costs have somehow remained the same.
For instance, pomegranate is generally sold at Rs 150 for kilo at wholesale, whereas the retail price is Rs 250. Alongside, the prices of orange and lemon which are usually around Rs 75 are now inflated to Rs 150 at the local shops.
One of the vendors mentioned that the hike in the prices is triggered by the loss of the regular customers. He said, “Covid and the curfew have reduced the customers drastically. The cost of procurement has also escalated due to restricted movement. Increasing the price is the only way (for us) to make a living.”
The wholesale traders also mentioned about a reduction in the procurement of stocks. Wholesalers Fruit Traders’ Development Association convener Syed Mahboob said “Most of the stock is unsold, but no change in prices. Limited competition may have led to price hike at the vendor level.”
Another vendor Krishnappa said once four to five lemon were sold at Rs 10. He said, “Due to high demand, we charge Rs 10 per lemon now.”

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