Fruit and vegetable prices have risen by around 200 per cent in Saudi retail outlets due to rising operational costs, according to a report in local daily Al-Madina.
Mohammed Al-Johani, deputy chairman of the foodstuff committee of the Jeddah Chamber of Commerce and Industry (JCCI), said that many fruit and vegetables were selling at twice the price of the central fruit and vegetables market in Jeddah, the Halaqa.
According to Al-Johani, a kilo of cucumbers was going for SR1.5 (€0.34), while an entire 20kg carton was selling for SR5-SR8 (€1.13-€1.80) in the Halaqa, the Saudi Gazette reported.
Meanwhile, a kilo of cantaloupe was retailing at SR1 (€0.23) in the supermarkets, while an entire 10kg carton was going for just SR4 (€0.90) in the Halaqa.
Mutassim Abu Zinadah, deputy chairman of the syndicate of auctioneers, said that prices in the Halaqa would remain stable despite an increase in demand due to the arrival of large numbers of pilgrims for Ramadan.
Major importer Sharbatly advised consumers to purchase produce directly from importers in the Halaqa if they wished to obtain the fairest prices.