sabitri brata: soaring fruit prices ahead of the festival | Bhubaneswar News
Bhubaneswar: Ahead of the Sabitri Brata festival, prices of all seasonal fruits increased by at least 50% in city markets. The festival, which married women observe, will take place on Monday.
Vendors said that since mango is a biennial fruit crop, its yield was lower this year. In addition, bad weather affected production.
“Fewer mango varieties are available on the market this year. Supply from other states is also low this year. Therefore, prices are high,” said Kartika Swain, a mango vendor in town.
“Every year, before Sabitri Brata, fruit prices increase, but this year the increase is quite strong. After a two-year break due to the Covid-19 pandemic, people don’t want to compromise on celebrating the festival. So they are spending more, but the prices have just skyrocketed,” said Kalpana Jena, a housewife.
On Sabitri Brata, married women consume fruits all day and worship Yamraj, the god of death, seeking long life from their spouse. According to custom, parents send fruits, new clothes and other ornaments to their married daughters on the occasion.
On Saturday, most of the city’s markets saw a heavy rush of shoppers as people headed out for last-minute shopping for the festival. Consumers were seen buying a variety of fruits including mango, jackfruit, grape, orange, palm, banana, watermelon, pineapple, jamun and candied apple . Crowds of customers were also seen in clothing and other stores.
Most of the fruit sellers said they were happy with the huge footfall of customers in the stores, as they were hardly able to do business in the past two years due to the pandemic.
“In 2020, people were unable to observe the festival due to the Covid-induced lockdown. The following year, sales plummeted as people suffered from financial constraints. This year the market has started to recover and we are happy that we were able to make up for the loss,” said Sukant Patra, a fruit seller.