Demand not affected: Traders
KATHMANDU, Oct 1: Prices of imported fruits in local stores have increased by around 30 percent over the past year due to rise in import costs.
Traders, however, said surge in prices has not affected demand for fruits imported from foreign countries.
Imported fruits like guava, apples, litchi, mangoes, Chinese pear and sweat oranges are popular among well-off people and expatriate community. These fruits are sourced from countries like Thailand, China, Japan, Turkey and India, among others.
Tulsi Shrestha, a supervisor at Bhat-Bhateni Department Store, Koteshwar, said imported fruits have become dearer due to rise in prices in the source countries itself. She, however, said rise in prices have not impacted sales. “People with disposable income are our major customers. Demand for these fruits is on the rise even though their prices have increased over the past year,” said Shrestha.
Bhat-Bhateni Department Store at Koteshwar sells imported fruits worth Rs 35,000-Rs 50,000 every day.
Prices of imported fruits in local department stores range from Rs 255 for a kg of apples to Rs 2,375 for a kg of Thai guava. Mangoes and oranges are available at Rs 890 an Rs 400 per kg respectively, while Thai grapes and sweet oranges cost Rs 700 and Rs 550 per kg respectively.
Antim Ranjit, marketing and branding manager of Bigmart at City Centre, also said prices of imported fruits have increased compared to past year as this happens to be off-season for most of the popular fruits.
He said rise in prices have not impacted sales in his store. “We have not felt any impact. Demand for foreign fruits is growing as they are very popular among local as well as expatriate community,” Ranjit added.
According to Ranjt, Bigmart store sells imported fruits worth around Rs 40,000 a day.