Prices for tomatoes are climbing again after dropping by as much as 70% in the last few months.
A quick survey at Lusaka’s Soweto market, the country’s main outlet for fresh produce, indicated that a 25kg crate of tomatoes was now selling at between K100 and K120. The same quantity sold between K40 and K60 in the past few weeks, after dropping from about K220.
A price watch programme developed by a local seedling company, also put the price of tomatoes at K100 per 25kg crate.
Street traders were also getting higher prices. It ranges from K10 upwards for half a dozen tomatoes.
“This is much better than what we were selling at a few weeks back,” said Maureen Nakalwa, of Lusaka’s 10 Miles.
Local producers, especially vegetable growers, are being marginalised by subsidised imported vegetables like tomatoes and onion, which flooded the local market.
The Zambia National Farmers Union (ZNFU) appealed to government to take measures to protect local producers.