Prices of tomatoes, pepper crash further in Enugu markets


File photo of a tomato market in Nigeria
The prices of tomatoes and pepper have further crashed in major markets in Enugu metropolis, the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports.
A market survey conducted by NAN on Saturday revealed that prices of both tomatoes and pepper had dropped when compared to what their prices were in December 2018.
In December, a big basket of tomatoes sold for between N7, 000 and N8, 500 but now sells for between N4, 000 and N4, 500 depending on the species of tomatoes.
Also, a small basket of tomatoes which went for between N4, 000 and N6, 000 in December, presently sells for between N2, 200 and N2, 600, just as a five litre gallon of tomatoes that was N1, 500 now goes for N600.
Alhaji Gambo Suleiman, a tomatoes dealer at Akwata Market, attributed the drop in the price of tomatoes to it being the harvesting season.
Suleiman said that the UTC species that come from Jos had flooded the market because this was the harvest period.
According to him, from June to Oct. 2018, the UTC species sells between N17, 000 and N18, 500 per basket while the other species from Benue is between N14, 000 and N15, 000.
Another tomatoes trader at Garki market, Mrs Adamma Agu, said that the price of tomatoes crashed tremendously because it was now in season.
Agu said that a lot tomatoes would be wasted if the price remained high, adding that the price could crash further in order to avoid loss due to lack of preservation methods.
Some pepper sellers said that the price of pepper had also dropped as some species were presently in season while some are still scarce.
Mrs Esther Onoja, a pepper seller at Akwata market, said that the small red pepper called `otarodo’ and the chili pepper called `shombo’ were largely available as a bag of these pepper which sold for N15,000 in December 2018 now sold for between N7,000 and N8,000.
However, Onoja said that the bell pepper called `tatashe’ was very scarce, adding that the few ones in the market were leftovers from 2018.
Miss Ebere Uzondu, another seller, said that the price of pepper would continue to drop because farmers were still bringing in their produce from different villages and from the Northern parts of the country.
A customer, Mrs Ifeoma Onyia, expressed joy over the appreciable fall in the price of tomatoes, adding that it would have been better if there were facilities to preserve them to avoid scarcity. (NAN)

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