New Delhi: The current price of almonds, which used to sell at Rs 850 per kg, stands at a whopping Rs 1,100 per kg. Similarly, anjeer (figs) is at Rs 1,500 per kg as against the earlier price of Rs 1,200 per kg. A similar pattern has been seen in the price of many other dry fruits and nuts such as apricots, raisins, and walnuts.
According to Ashok Gupta, owner of Dilli Grocery in Khari Baoli, “These hikes in prices have greatly affected the sales of these products this festival season. If this continues, it is a matter of great concern for all traders.”
Festival season is underway in Delhi, which means crowded markets and good business. Recently, time curbs have also been lifted on markets, shops and malls. Among the most important ingredients of festivals are dry fruits and nuts. As gifts or sweet dishes, dry fruits become very important during festivals. However, with sky-soaring prices, dry fruits may not come under everyone's budget.
The sharp rise in prices is a direct impact of the Afghanistan crisis. According to the Federation of Indian Export Organisation (FIEO), India imports 85 per cent of its dry fruits from Afghanistan. After the ensuing crisis, supply has decreased, making local traders fall back on inventories.
Under similar lines, almond costs have risen to 980 per kg in the Guru Nanak store in Lajpat Nagar. According to Dinesh Chawla, owner of Lahore Dry Fruit store in Khari Baoli, the average prices of these imported dry fruits have risen by Rs 300 per kg.
“With the fear of the pandemic, people were already avoiding going out shopping. The price rise has impacted sales again whose exact measurement can only be calculated in future,” said Dinesh Chawla from Lahore Dry Fruits.
As the supply chain is affected for an uncertain time, the future of dry fruits such as almonds, apricots, and figs becomes worrisome. The traders will have to look at alternate supply options if they want to continue the business. “We will look at alternatives for import according to socio-political conditions,” he added.
The impact of this hike is not only seen as an impending loss to traders but is also of concern among students, elderlies and sweet owners of the society. In the future, the market of almonds, figs, and apricots can see massive changes.