The prices of tomatoes and onions have significantly increased in major markets of Enugu metropolis, the News Agency of Nigeria reports.
A market survey conducted by NAN on Thursday, reveals that prices of both commodities have increased when compared to a few weeks back.
The price of a big basket of tomatoes sells for between N15,000 and N17,500 as against N9,000 and N12,000 depending on the species.
The price of a small basket of tomatoes now costs between N10,000 and N13,500.
A tomato seller at new Akwata Market, Garki, Enugu, Ego Madu, attributed the increase in the price of tomatoes to insufficient supply of the commodity from the Northern part of the country.
“The UTC specie that comes from Jos, which is supposed to have reduced in price from October is still scarce and expensive,” Madu explained.
According to her, as at October 2019, the UTC specie was sold for between N9,000 and N10,500; while the other specie from Benue was sold for between N6,500 and N8,000.
Tochi Ezema, another tomato trader at Garki market, said the prices might not reduce if the insufficiency in supply of the commodity continued, even as its season of abundance was gradually getting nearer.
According to Chris Odogwu, a customer at Mayor Market, the price of tomatoes tends to reduce towards the end of the year.
Odogwu expressed surprise that the price was still high even though this was November.
He urged the government to build storage facilities for preservation of perishable items in the country as that would ensure price stability and availability at all times.
Meanwhile, an onion seller, at New Garki Market, Ado Sani, lamented that the significant increase in the price of onions was associated with other factors apart from seasonal changes.
Sani listed the factors to include bad roads, increase in transportation fare from the northern part of the country, as well as the recent #Endsars protest.
According to him, a bag of onions is now between N65,000 and N70,000 as against N48,000 and N50,000 in October.
Another onion seller at New market, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said he was forced to suspend trading in the commodity because his customers were seriously lamenting over the price increase in the commodity.
“With the increase in the price of onions, I decided to stop buying and selling the commodity to my customers for now,” he said.