67% Indian households surveyed that consumed tomatoes confirm paying over INR 80/kg; 7% have stopped buying tomatoes
- ● 32% of them confirm paying between INR 100-150/kg while 6% paid over INR 150/kg
- ● 35% have reduced tomato consumption significantly; 40% of respondents indicated that they have reduced it partially
- ● Percentage of households paying over INR 80/kg more than doubled in the last fortnight
July 12, 2023, New Delhi: Over the last fortnight tomato prices have seen several fold increases in different cities, not just in retail markets but also in wholesale markets, across the country. In Delhi, the prices have risen from INR 30-50/kg on June 24 to INR 100/kg for the hybrid variety and INR 150- 180/ kg for the desi variety in most parts of the country. The reason for the sudden steep rise in prices is not far to find. For instance in Delhi’s Azadpur mandi, which is Asia's largest wholesale market for vegetables and fruits, which serves most parts of the country, tomato arrivals have dropped to less than 25% of normal arrivals, according to traders.In view of the poor quality of supplies and the spike in prices, 10%-15% of McDonald’s stores in north and east India have temporarily stopped using fresh tomato in its burgers and wraps, according to a Reuters report.
LocalCircles has received thousands of posts and comments from citizens across the country expressing how they are coping with this near 500% increases in price of tomato in the last 3 weeks. To better understand the price that households have been paying lately and to understand how they are coping with the rise in tomato prices, LocalCircles conducted a national survey which received over 21,000 responses from household consumers located in 311 districts of India. 61% respondents were men while 39% respondents were women. 46% respondents were from tier 1, 31% from tier 2 and 23% respondents were from tier 3, 4 and rural districts.
67% of consumers surveyed confirm that they have been paying more than INR 80/kg for tomatoes during their latest purchase
The survey first sought to understand the last price paid for tomatoes by households. It asked the respondents, “What best describes the price for tomatoes that your household paid most recently?” This query received 11,063 responses with 29% stating that they are paying between INR 80-100 per kg; 16% stated they have been paying INR 100-120/kg; 16% of households surveyed have been paying INR 120-150/ kg and 6% stating over INR 150/kg. The survey responses show that some households are not much affected as 11% of respondents indicated that they have been paying less than INR 30/kg, likely located in districts where tomatoes grow; 6% indicated they are buying tomato for INR 30-50/kg; and 16% are able to get it for INR 50-80/kg. In sum, 67% of consumers surveyed confirm that they have been paying more than INR 80/kg for tomatoes during their latest purchase. Of them, 32% paid between INR 100-150/kg while 6% paid over INR 150/kg.
Percentage of households paying over INR 80/kg more than doubled over the last fortnight from 32% to 67%
A comparative study with an earlier survey shows that as against 32% households which were paying more than INR 80/kg for tomatoes on June 27th, the percentage of households paying above that threshold has more than doubled to 67% on July 10th. Due to limited supplies, good country tomatoes at lower prices are just impossible to get with people reporting paying between INR 120-180/kg for them.
75% of households surveyed indicated that they have reduced consumption of tomatoes
Given that most households prefer to keep their expenses within the budget, the survey then sought to know how households are coping with this 500% increase in tomato prices. It asked respondents, “How have you been coping with the high tomato prices in the last two weeks?” Out of 10,345 respondents to this query, 75% indicated that they have reduced consumption of tomatoes, while 7% have stopped buying tomatoes. The data shows that while 7% of households surveyed have stopped consuming tomatoes; 35% have reduced consumption significantly; 40% have reduced it partially and only 18% have kept consumption the same and paid more to buy tomatoes.
In summary, 67% of consumers surveyed in the LocalCircles confirmed that they have been paying more than INR 80/kg for tomatoes during their latest purchase, indicating that high prices are now impacting have the length and breadth of the country. The situation is so bad that 7% of household consumers surveyed have stopped buying tomatoes altogether as they are unable to afford them while 75% have reduced their consumption. The impact of the major rains in North India is yet to be seen on the crops as well as transportation and whether it will lead to per kg prices crossing INR 200. And even if supplies increase, these prices aren’t likely to drop drastically to INR 30/kg overnight and could take a few months to readjust.
The survey received over 21,000 responses from household consumers located in 311 districts of India. 61% respondents were men while 39% respondents were women. 46% respondents were from tier 1, 31% from tier 2 and 23% respondents were from tier 3, 4 and rural districts. The survey was conducted via LocalCircles platform and all participants were validated citizens who had to be registered with LocalCircles to participate in this survey.