The Department of Consumer Affairs (DOCA) has directed two cooperatives, the National Cooperative Consumers’ Federation of India (NCCF) and National Agricultural Cooperative Marketing Federation of India (NAFED), to sell tomatoes at the fixed retail price of Rs 50 per kilo from 15 August 2023 onwards. Read on to know more.
After months of the tomato price hike crisis that hit the nation—and related inflation in the prices of other veggies like onions and ginger—tomato prices seem to be stabilizing at Rs 100 or above per kilo in most places across India. The good news for people living in Delhi NCR, however, is that they will now be able to access tomatoes at even Rs 50 per kilo thanks to the work of a few government-owned cooperatives.
The Department of Consumer Affairs (DOCA) has directed two cooperatives, the National Cooperative Consumers’ Federation of India (NCCF) and National Agricultural Cooperative Marketing Federation of India (NAFED), to sell tomatoes at the fixed retail price of Rs 50 per kilo from 15 August 2023 onwards. The tomatoes sold at this low rate will be available at select wholesale markets in Delhi NCR.
Video Credit: YouTube/Sanjeev Kapoor Khazana
The retail sale of tomatoes at lower prices fixed by the government and its associated cooperatives started from 14 July 2023. Reports suggest that a total of 15 lakh kilos of tomatoes had been procured by NCCF and NAFED between July and August, and the tomatoes are now being sold to retail consumers not only in Delhi NCR, but also Rajasthan (Jaipur and Kota), Uttar Pradesh (Lucknow, Kanpur, Varanasi, Prayagraj) and Bihar (Patna, Muzaffarpur, Arrah and Buxar).
At the direction of DOCA, both NCCF and NAFED had started procuring tomatoes from wholesale mandis in Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka and Maharashtra simultaneously to supply the fruit to major retail centres across North India. The retail price of these tomatoes sourced by the NCCF and NAFED was initially fixed at Rs 90 per kilo. From 16 July 2023 onwards, the price was lowered to Rs 80 per kilo, then further down to Rs 70 per kilo on 20 July 2023. The new reduction of prices to Rs 50 per kilo is expected to benefit people across North India even further.
During the month of August, the NCCF has increased the supply of tomatoes across Delhi NCR by stationing its mobile vans across 70 select locations in Delhi, and 15 more in Noida and Greater Noida. Further, the NCCF has also maintained the sale of tomatoes at this lowered retail price through the Open Network for Digital Commerce (ONDC) platform online. Due to these concerted efforts by the government, tomato prices have fallen on average, mitigating the tomato price hike crisis to a large extent.