Prices of locally produced vegetables have seen a considerable drop at the Doha Central Market, at times by around 50% compared to the same season two years ago before the blockade started.
Ever since the unjust blockade was imposed by Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Bahrain and Egypt on June 5, 2017, Qatar has exerted great efforts to enhance local agricultural production through the use advanced technologies and by offering local farmers and farm owners the necessary support to increase their production and prolong the local farming season.
Many Qataris have stressed the importance of continuing with these efforts to ensure the availability of local vegetables in the market through the year while ensuring the same quality at prices, according to a report in local Arabic daily Arrayah. This will also help reduce the dependence on imported agricultural products, they point out.
While the prices of vegetables at the Doha Central Market see periodic variations, consumers generally find them reasonable and particularly good for this time of the year. For instance, a box of tomatoes weighing around 5kg was priced between QR15 and QR20, while an 8kg box of eggplants cost QR20. Similarly, a 6kg box of cabbages cost QR5-7, 5kg zucchini QR15 and 5kg white onions QR15. The price of a box of cauliflowers, weighing some 7kg, was QR15.
As for watermelons, the prices hovered around QR10 a piece for the Iranian and Omani varieties, while sweet melon was sold for QR15 for the box of 5-6 pieces.
Salim al-Marri, a citizen, said he considered the prices of vegetables excellent for this time of the year, and were “much better than what they were before the blockade”. He added that he did not expect to find such prices at the vegetable market during this season due to the high temperatures.
Ali Saleem said the local vegetables currently on display at the market are of a higher quality than the imported ones and the prices are excellent, especially when compared to rates offered in the retail market (including various shops and supermarkets) around the country. He appreciated the role of local farms in providing such good quantities of high-quality products during this time of the year.
Mohamed al-Jabir stressed that such positive results would not have been achieved in the farm sector without the support provided by the government to local producers. On their part, the local farms have worked hard to supply the market with the adequate quantities of vegetables and address any shortage caused momentarily by the blockade, he added.
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