Sat, Feb 06, 2016 - Page 5 News List

Vegetable supply sufficient: agency

Staff writer, with CNA

Vegetable supplies remain sufficient to meet rising demand ahead of the upcoming Lunar New Year holiday, even though the nation suffered heavy agricultural losses after a recent cold wave, the Council of Agriculture’s Agriculture and Food Agency said on Thursday.

Due to sufficient supply, the agency described current vegetable retail prices as “reasonable,” although prices tend to rise to reflect an increase in demand ahead of the Lunar New Year holiday, which begins today.

According the agency, local daily vegetable supplies in the benchmark fruit and vegetable wholesale market in Taipei rose to 2,072 tonnes on Thursday, much higher than the daily average of 1,600 tonnes.

The agency said that the amount is expected to meet demand over the holiday period.

The fruit and vegetable wholesale market in Taipei serves as the main indicator of supplies and prices in the nation.

On Thursday, the average wholesale price in Taipei was NT$39.1 per kilogram, greater than a range of between NT$30 and NT$35 the agency thought was a fair price, but the average wholesale price of leafy vegetables was NT$30.4 per kilogram, meeting the agency’s expectation for a fair price.

The average wholesale price of vegetables in Taipei was greater than NT$21.6 recorded in the same period last year, the agency’s statistics showed.

However, the agency said the sharp yearly increase was due to last year’s relatively low base of comparison.

Agency Director Li Tsang-lang (李蒼郎) urged consumers not to worry about vegetable supplies.

“The cold weather last month did not cause heavy losses to vegetables. I can guarantee that there is no need to fear any supply shortage ahead of the Lunar New Year holiday,” Li said, adding that vegetable prices would be stable.

The price of a cabbage weighing 1.2kg to 1.8kg has fallen to a fair level of about NT$30, Li said.

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