Mother Dairy will sell tomatoes at Rs 55 per kg or below through its Safal retail outlets across the national capital region to provide relief to consumers, the government said on Friday after reviewing the prices of essential commodities.
Tomatoes are available at Rs 60-80 per kg in the Delhi-NCR market. Leading milk supplier Mother Dairy also sells fruits and vegetables through its over 400 Safal outlets across Delhi-NCR.
An inter-ministerial committee held a meeting under the chairmanship of the consumer affairs secretary to review the price and availability situation of onions, tomatoes and pulses, an official statement said.
"Mother Dairy has agreed to sell Tomatoes at not more than Rs 55 per kilogram. Mother Dairy/Safal were also advised to consider repacking the tomato puree packets of 800 grams that are available with them into smaller packets of 100/200 grams for wider consumption and retailing at all their outlets," it added.
In the meeting, it was informed that a sufficient supply of tomato puree is available for retail.
The meeting was attended by representatives of the Ministry of Agriculture, Horticulture Commissioner, NAFED, Mother Dairy, Kendriya Bhandar, National Cooperative Consumers' Federation (NCCF) and senior officials of the Department of Consumer Affairs.
"There has been hardly any damage to the tomato crop in Andhra Pradesh which is a major producer. Horticulture Commissioner has been asked to write to Andhra Pradesh Horticulture Commissioner asking him to dispatch the fresh tomatoes immediately for augmenting supplies in major demand centres including Delhi NCR," the statement said.
The official in the agriculture ministry informed the meeting that tomatoes rates have normalised in most states. The arrivals from Madhya Pradesh have begun which will have an immediate easing impact on prices.
The tomato crop in Karnataka has begun arriving in the mandis and this will have an immediate impact on prices especially in the southern region.
"Horticulture Commissioner was asked to consider the proposal under the Mission for Integrated Development of Horticulture (MIDH) for exploring the possibility of cultivation of more tomatoes and onions in Northern India," the statement said.
On onions, the committee was informed during the meeting that the Delhi government has been rejecting some trucks arriving at Delhi despite its officers being present in Maharashtra to check the stock quality before dispatch.
"Delhi government representatives were requested to ensure that adequate personnel are deputed at loading sources to ensure that there is no rejection on arrival so as to facilitate a constant and healthy supply for retailing," the statement said.
The arrival of fresh onion stock has begun from Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan and it is expected that prices will show a downward trend in the coming week especially after Diwali.
Nafed has sufficient stock of onions and has requested that all stock should be picked up and retailed by various state governments as per their requirement.
In case of pulses, the panel decided that there is sufficient stock at present and it should be immediately assessed and offloaded in the market through Kendriya Bhandar, Safal and NCCF in smaller packs of half and one kg.
Pulses will be supplied by Nafed from the government buffer to Kendriya Bhandar, Safal and NCCF.