Wednesday, July 28, 2010

How Food Is Disappearing from Indian Bazaars

Starting this week I will be writing a regular column for Technorati - the blogging and technology portal. Here's the first instalment. 

Wonder how food is disappearing from bazaars in India. Till a few years ago vegetables were available freely and cheaply. Over the past few years vegetable and fruits have begun to cost more and have become scarce. I guess stagflation is here.

It’s surprising because India is basically an agrarian country and once food was abundant and locally available. It is also a result of a slow and steady decline in agricultural production in India because of environmental problems such as: droughts, water scarcity, and absence of a ready market for agricultural and food products.

Inflation in April 2010 stood at 9.6 per cent compared to 1.3 per cent last year. This is unbelievably high. The small trader who sold vegetables and fruits have been wiped out because they can’t afford to buy at the higher rates fearing what would happen when people don’t buy because of high prices.

The fuel price rise has also affected food prices. A survey conducted among 27,000 internet users showed that Indians are equally concerned about food prices and terrorism (12 per cent each) compared to their concern for the economy, global warming and education (8 per cent each).

Article first published as How Food Is Disappearing from Indian Bazaars on Technorati.

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