Unfriendly weather hits tomato growers of Gumberpul area in Himachal

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KUMARHATTI: The arrival of early monsoon has spelt doom for tomato growers of Gumberpul area near Subathu. The area known in Solan district for producing initial varieties of tomato on large scale has this time faced the wrath the uncommon weather conditions in past one month. The growers of area were in catch 22 situation, thanks to an unexpected crash in market prices of crop.

The continuation of supply of tomato from plains has hit the marketability of local produce badly thus forcing the growers to delay the plucking of produce from fields. Usually by this time it was only Gumberpul area and few other pockets that pumped the produce supply in markets. Generally the tomato supply from plains were reduced considerably due to the severe warm weather conditions in May and June months. The supply comes to an end after monsoon showers hit the region by June end.

However, this time the temperature remained under 40 degree most of time in May and this month also followed by the premature monsoon rain. The rain has failed to make any impact on produce in plains thanks to the lack of heat.

Hence the local produce has failed to find buyers. The local tomato season started with the supply from Gumberpul area. The local produce that started to pour in markets by May end was managed to get handsome prices of Rs. 20 per kg. Interestingly it was only the initial produce from Gumberpul area that managed to get good prices. Otherwise the market prices of local produce remained low throughout rest of season.

It was better to wait for some time rather to sell the produce at throwaway price, pointed out a grower of Gumberpul area. The prices at this point were not equal to meet the expenses of basket required to carry the produce to market, he quipped .

It was perhaps first time, we were facing such situation, lamented another grower.

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