Sky-high potato prices have taken a turn, robust onion volumes are causing price pressures for producers and the aftermath of cold spells, together with month-end demand, have seen tomato prices shoot up. This is according to Absa’s latest fresh produce market report.
Highlights from the report include that cabbage prices jumped by 13% week on week owing to lesser volumes, while the price of carrots fell as the volume increased.
On the back of robust volumes, price pressures were still felt in the onion market with 10kg having fetched R20 to R30. Planting is underway in the Western Cape in preparation for delivery throughout the holiday season.
The average price for a 10kg bag of medium-sized potatoes was R90, whereas the price for a 10kg bag of large potatoes ranged from R95 to R100, slightly lower than the previous week’s prices that broke the R100 barrier.
High potato prices are nevertheless a consequence of extraordinarily low harvest numbers, with about 1 million fewer 10kg bags available than in the previous two months. This year’s volumes have been significantly reduced due to bad weather and frost early in the year.
Tomato quality remained strong, and an increase in supply is projected in the following weeks, which will result in a minor price decline. Medium-sized and medium-plus tomatoes were marketed at R18 to R20 per kilogram. For 9kg of large first-grade tomatoes, prices ranged from R130 to R140. Due to the frost damage that occurred in late July and early August, volumes have decreased significantly.
This, together with a combination of seasons finishing off, brought about high price increases. Prices also tend to increase over month-end periods, which saw the month-on-month week price reach an 87% increase across the five major markets. Consumer demand has reportedly been good.
Cabbage market trends
This week’s volume climbed by 2.7%, compared to a 2.5% fall the week before. Volumes fell 17.6% month on month, compared to a 9.6% dip the week before. The price climbed by 13% this week, compared to a 2.5% increase in the seven days before. The price has reduced by 30.3% year over year, compared to a 33.5% reduction the week before.
Carrot market trends
The volume climbed by 14.7%, compared to a 3.3% increase the week before. Volumes are down 10.3% month on month, compared to an 11% dip the week before. The price has reduced by only 0.5%, compared to a 2.4% dip the prior week. The price has reduced by 28.6% year over year, compared to a decrease of 27.4% the previous week.
Onion market trends
Onion volumes jumped by 26.4% this week, compared to a low 3.1% the previous week. Compared to the previous week’s low gain of 3.5% month on month, volumes grew by 5.1% percent. The price dropped by 6.8%, compared to a 4.5% drop the week before. The price dropped 30.8% year on year, compared to a 26.6% year-on-year drop the week before.
Potato market trends
The volume this week climbed by 17.1%, compared to a 7.7% reduction the week before. This week’s volume fell by 11.9% percent on a month-on-month basis, compared to a 28.9% drop the prior week. In comparison to the previous week’s gain of 4.3%, the price jumped by 10.7% this week. The price jumped by 40.5% year on year this week, compared to a 56.5% increase the week before.
Tomato market trends
The volume dropped by 12.7%, compared to a 14% the week before. The volume decreased by 24.1% on a month-over-month basis, compared to a reduction of 27% the prior week. In comparison to the previous week’s gain of 28.2%, the price increased by 46.7%. When compared to the previous week’s high of 71.1% year on year, this week’s price has grown by a whopping 87.1%.
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