Demand for fruits and nuts has increased significantly in Kerala during the recent days in view of the Ramadan season. The most popular items are dates, elaeocarpus (referred to as ‘karakka’ in Malayalam) and dry fruits.
Dates are available at prices in the range of Rs 150-4,200 a kg and the most preferred varieties are Saudi, Algerian and Sawafi, which cost Rs 250-400. Prices of other major items are: Cashew – Rs 500-1,200; ‘karakka’ – Rs 200-250; dried grapes – Rs 450-600 and almonds – Rs 750-1,000.
“Devotees observing the fast during the holy month of Ramadan also buy juicy fruits such as orange, watermelon and sweet lemon in large quantities to increase their water intake,” said a trader.
“After the COVID-19 pandemic struck, sales of dry fruits had gone up in Kerala as these items became part of the regular diet of a large number of people. With the arrival of the Ramadan month, this demand will shoot up further,” said another dealer.
Meanwhile, several hotels and restaurants are offering combo offers comprising a number of special items to break the Ramadan fast. Purchase by these establishments is also expected to reflect in the fruits and nuts market in the state.