ISLAMABAD, June 3: Good news for the fruit lovers of the twin cities as nearly all summer varieties are available in the market and the prices are becoming competitive too.
However, with ample supplies due to peak season the prices of watermelons have dropped to Rs16 per kilogram at the weekly bazaars organised by the Capital Development Authority (CDA) and the City District Government Rawalpindi (CDGR) in their respective areas.
Watermelon is the only farm product which is sold at roadside makeshift arrangements in the federal capital.One can see heaps of the fruit at almost every corner and every third seller is seen offering a different variety of it.
“I have seen so many different kids of watermelons in Islamabad that I never saw in Karachi,” said Mohammad Muslim, a resident of the federal capital, as he was interested to know more about the light green water melons with strips. As the seller told him, Muslim was excited to know that this variety was coming from Afghanistan and tribal areas.
With summer nearing the peak, the list of fruits available at stalls seems endless. “Compared to the winter season the vegetables in summers are not that tasty but there are more fruits on the racks these days,” said a buyer at Peshawar Mor weekly bazaar.
Apart from many kinds of watermelons and musk melons, another attractive variety is cherry, a box of which available at Rs220, but as evening nears some of sellers are willing to offer it for Rs200.
The supply of fruits would continue for the coming quarter with the king of fruits – mango already making inroads. However, the prices of plump, mango, peach and apricot are expected to decline in the coming few weeks as more supplies will be pouring in.
With all such attractive varieties available, the buyers are least interested in some fruits like Black Currant (Falsa) which used to be a prime attraction in summers mainly for making its squash/juice.
“The eating habits are changing and people have other tasty fruits and drinks available in the market – so why go for that lengthy hard work of extracting Black Currant’s juice,” said Azra, a buyer at Shamsabad Sunday bazaar.
However, bananas continue to soar around Rs120 to Rs150 per dozen as the Sindh crop has been reported hit by virus.
Like fruits, the abundant supply of tomatoes mainly from Sindh has stabilised its prices at around Rs20 per kg and with temperature rising further in the coming days, its ripening would speed up to bring its prices further down.