The prices of fruits have gone up in Huye District, Southern Province, a mini-survey by The New Times indicates.
According to the survey conducted in Huye town, consumers now have to fork out more to buy passion fruits, watermelon and oranges. Currently, a kilogramme of passion fruits goes for Rwf1,200, from Rwf800, that of oranges is at Rwf800 compared to Rwf500 previously, while watermelon (small) costs Rwf1,000, up from Rwf500 and big-sized one go for Rwf2,500 from Rwf1,500.
Faida Uzayisenga, a fruit vendor in Huye Market, attributed the increase to rising costs involved in importing them from Burundi, which he said is the main supplier of fruits to the area.
“Transport charges have gone up which has affected prices of passion fruits and oranges that are mainly imported from Burundi,” Uzayisenga said.
Other fruits are bought from Rusizi, Nyamasheke and Nyamagabe districts, while watermelons are from neighbouring Uganda, the vendor added.
Jacquelline Uzamukunda said her family no longer buys passion fruits for homemade juice as the price is too high for them. She noted that the rise in prices could be due to the fact that there is local production of fruits, saying local farmers are not interested in fruit farming preferring to grow food crops like beans, cassava and bananas.
Peter Nsanzineza said consumers should brace themselves for even higher fruit prices “because of the growing demand in the area.”