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Tomato prices in India nosedive as surplus harvest causes a downfall

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Farmers across India are facing significant losses as tomato prices have plummeted within a month. The unexpected high yield of tomatoes has led to a drastic drop in prices, forcing farmers to abandon or destroy their crops. In Maharashtra, one of the worst affected states, tomato prices have fallen to as low as Rs 2-3 per kilogram in retail markets. Similarly, in Nashik, wholesale tomato prices have dropped from Rs 2,000 per crate to just Rs 90. Farmers in various parts of India are struggling to recover their expenses due to the sharp decline in tomato prices.

The sudden increase in tomato production was triggered by a surge in prices earlier this year, which encouraged farmers to cultivate tomatoes on a large scale. However, the excessive supply has now caused prices to crash. The government had previously intervened when tomato prices were high, reducing the subsidized rate to provide relief to consumers. While consumers are benefiting from the low prices, farmers like Vivek Pati have chosen to destroy their tomato crops due to the high costs involved in harvesting and transportation.

In response to the situation, a group of farmers in Junnar and Ambegaon tehsils is planning a protest in Mumbai, demanding the implementation of a Minimum Support Price (MSP) for tomatoes to protect against price volatility. It remains uncertain how long tomato prices will remain at these low levels and what steps the government will take to support the struggling farmers. The surplus tomato yield and the subsequent price crash have caught everyone in the sector off guard, highlighting the need for measures to stabilize market conditions and protect farmers from such unforeseen fluctuations.

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