Thiruvananthapuram: As the occasion of Onam dawns upon Kerala once again, vegetable prices have crashed.
Compared to the previous year's Onam, the prices have come down due to the surplus production in Tamil Nadu.
Vegetable traders at Palayam Connemara Market are not certain whether this trend will sustain or not until the second week of September when Onam arrives.
Despite the state government doing steps to make the people cultivate vegetables at their household, it has not yet been productive.
The general trend being seen is that households could meet their demands, but unable to produce it in large quantities.
People are apprehensive of vegetable prices going up with the recent floods ravaging the northern districts of the state.
Raveendran, a trader who is in his late 60s at Palayam Connemara Market, told DC that the recent floods had not affected traders like him as he is relying on neighbouring state for vegetable supply.
"Majority of the vegetables are being imported from Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka as domestic production is low. If the vegetable supplies are affected in due course, then we would be forced to increase the price of vegetables," said Mr Raveendran, who has been a vegetable trader for over four decades at Connemara Market.
But he is a tad bit disappointed as these days more wayside hawkers do a brisk business of selling vegetables, fruits and flowers. Mr Raveendran feels that if there is a price hike in the coming days, customers will only make a beeline to wayside hawkers who they claim to sell farm-fresh and organic veggies.
Apart from vegetable sellers, flower merchants also do a brisk business. Thanks to the numerous floral carpets being put by households, government offices and private institutions on the course of the festival, people like Rajesh are happy.
"Floral designs need a wide array of flowers of different hues and shades belonging to the marigold, gomphrena (Vadamalli in Malayalam), Basil aka Tulsi leaves and local traditional varieties of flowers in the neighbourhood. Unfortunately, the cost for imported flowers will increase in price due to the festival of Onam," said Rajesh, who has been a flower trader for over a decade.