Leafy greens do a vanishing act at city vegetable markets

Rythu bazaars across the city are reporting a shortage of leafy greens, with most varieties except sorrel (gongura) unavailable for the past few days.

Officials said that crops sown in vast areas were damaged in heavy rains that lashed most of Krishna and Guntur districts in the recent past.

Amaranthus, also known as thotakoora, is nowhere to be found, sending shoppers into a tizzy. Spinach (palakoora), Malabar spinach (bachali), fenugreek (menthi koora), spring onion, etc. are also not seen in the markets. Till a week ago, sorrel was also in short supply.

Now, mostly mint, coriander, curry leaves and sorrel leaves are available at the markets.

The availability of amaranthus, a fast selling leafy vegetable, has dropped significantly. There is a mismatch between supply and demand of amaranthus, spinach or sessile joyweed (ponnaganti). Health-conscious people who look for red spiderling (punarnava) are disappointed as it has vanished from the markets.

However, the shortage in supplies did not push up the prices except for coriander. A bundle of coriander, which used to be available for about ₹10, now commands a price of ₹22 at the rythu bazaars. The prices of other leafy vegetables, however, are largely unchanged at ₹2.50 per bundle.

“The arrival of leafy vegetables have come down by 20%,” said S. Karunakar, Estate Officer at Patamata Rythu Bazaar.

According to information, there are six rythu bazaars in the city, one each at Swaraj Maidan, Payakapuram, Kedareswarapeta, Bhavanipuram, Ajijth Singh Nagar and Patamata. More than 450 quintals of vegetables arrive at Patamata Rythu Bazaar alone. Of this, 80 to 100 quintals would be leafy vegetables. The total arrivals in all six rythu bazaars would be more than 2,000 quintals per day.

Crops sown in Yanamalakuduru in Krishna district and Kunchanapalli in Guntur district were damaged in heavy rains. Due to waterlogging, harvesting of some vegetables was delayed. This impacted the arrivals of leafy greens in the city. The crops were not damaged due to scanty rain. The farmers who are cultivating vegetables, particularly leafy greens, in Krishna and Guntur have bore the brunt. Availability of the vegetables and prices are expected to be under pressure for the next few days due to tight supplies.

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