Tomato price drops at markets


The price of tomatoes has dropped significantly in markets across Accra due to the seasonal glut of the vegetable.

At the CMB tomato market where traders usually discharge their goods, a large wooden box of tomatoes, which used to sell at GHS1000, is now selling at GHS800.
A large basket, which sold for GHS400, is now between GHS200 and GHS250.

At the same market, one medium size plastic basket of tomatoes, which used to sell for GHS150, is now selling at GHS100.

Speaking in an interview with the Ghana News Agency, a spokesperson for the Greater Accra Tomato Traders Association, Madam Theresa Lartey, who has been in the business for over 40 years, said the drop in price is a normal occurrence every tomato season.

“Tomatoes come in seasons, for instance, during Christmas and Easter, the vegetable is out of season so, prices are higher, but the month of August is when tomato is in season, that is why as you can see, the market is flooded.

“Right now, sales are low, people quote whatever price they want to give you so, sometimes you sell it at the same price as you bought it from the farmers, and you don’t make any profit because if you don’t accept the price they give you, they will rot.”

“All the tomatoes you see here around this time is from the Ada areas, every tomato you see here is from Ghana, it is not from Burkina Faso…,” she added, saying: “The only time traders go to buy from Burkina Faso is during the lean seasons when tomatoes from Ada and Kumasi are in short supply.”

“Burkina Faso is able to produce tomatoes all year round because they have big dams, and we go there especially around the Easter seasons to boost availability, prices are high around that time because we have to exchange cedis for the CFA ” Madam Lartey said.

She called on the government to assist farmers to produce all year round to ensure price stability.

Tomatoes are said to be low in calories and provide important nutrients like vitamin C and potassium.

They are also rich in antioxidants and said to be linked to several benefits, including reduced risk of heart diseases and certain cancers.

Experts say tomatoes are key components in the diet of Ghanaian households and approximately 440,000 tons of tomatoes are consumed annually, equivalent to 40 per cent of household vegetable expenditure.

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