AN acute shortage of green vegetables has hit Bulawayo, with vendors saying the insufficient supply of the nutritious commodity could push up the price on the market.
A snap survey conducted in the city centre last week revealed that most of the vendors in the market place along Fifth Avenue and at Basch Street terminus, popularly known as Egodini, have gone for close to a month without sufficient supplies of chomolia and spinach vegetables.
Recently, retail shops such as OK and Greens had few vegetables on their shelves and were charging between $0.50 and $0.55 per bundle. In some shops the size of each bundle was equivalent to about two $0.10 bundles sold in the western suburbs and the sizes of the leaves appeared relatively small.
Vendors attributed the nutritious commodity shortage to heavy rains that pounded most parts of the country recently.
One of the vendors, who identified herself as Ms Sithabile Moyo, said it was now hard to get enough vegetables from suppliers.
“The little that we get from our suppliers is not enough to sustain the demand in the market,” Ms Moyo said. “Our suppliers in Matopo said their green vegetables were affected by the heavy rains which continue to fall in the country.”
Another vendor, Mr Melusi Dube, said during the rainy season, some crops, especially green vegetables and cabbage, are usually affected.
“We had a similar case in 2015 where our supplier who produces from a waterlogged area was affected by the heavy rains,” said Mr Dube. “Vegetables like chomolia, spinach and cabbages wilt when there is too much water in the gardens. We are now receiving small quantities of vegetables at higher prices from our suppliers. This is going to affect the way we package for resell as well.”
The main green vegetable suppliers in Matabeleland are Umguza, Matopo, Figtree, Umzingwane and Esigodini.
Meanwhile, a bunch of green vegetables has since decreased in size yet its price remains unchanged. – State Media