Canteens, messes, hotels, all of which used to offer complementary lime and onion have now stopped giving lemon wedges. (Representational Image/ Pexels)
Hyderabad: Lemon, a common person’s easiest source for vitamin c, the staple refreshing drink to prevent dehydration in a hot summer season, is now beyond our reach. As prices of various vegetables rise steeply in the market, lemons will taste bitter, and heavy, on the pocket. This rise of the lemon’s price is matched only by the rise in mercury and the temperatures.
This price rise is now immediately reflected at lime soda or lime juice carts on the streets. It has impacted the delicacy of the Ramzan season, with ‘Haleem’ sellers.
Canteens, messes, hotels, all of which used to offer complementary lime and onion have now stopped giving lemon wedges. At the Monda market, Secund-erabad, a single large sized lemon is selling for Rs 15, a medium one for Rs 10.
Middle-class families, who were buying the vegetables in adequate quantities, are giving the purchase of the citrus fruit a go by. What was a common part of every day in the kitchen, now, after petrol and diesel, and milk, is now beyond reach. This rising prices have impacted the Haleem sellers throughout the city. At café 555, each day, around 6,000 lemons are being used. The management said, "without a lemon, Haleem does not taste the same. To add a tangy taste, it is important to garnish a squeeze of lime before eating."
Ganesh Kumar of Ganesh vegetable wholesale merchants at Gudimalkapur market, said, "at our market, around 72 tons of lemons get sold each day. This season, the prices have been abnormally high. The reason is Ramzan this year is coinciding with summer. Both push the demand very high. Besides, lots of lemons get exported out of the local market." Joint director of TS agricultural marketing department, K. Rajashekar Reddy, gave some more insight into this abnormal rise of lemon prices.
"the Nakrekal lemon market in Nalgonda is the largest market in Telangana, from which around two to three thousand bags of lemons are distributed each day. With rise in groundwater levels, lemon farms were converted into paddy fields. And yes, lots of lemons get exported to Delhi and Dubai."