Lemon prices have more than doubled over the past month following a decline in supplies from Tanzania and increased demand on belief the fruit builds body immunity in the wake of Covid-19.
Agriculture Chief Administrative Secretary (CAS) Anne Nyagah cited diminishing supply from Tanzania as the main reason that has impacted on price.
A 50 kilo bag of lemons at the Muthurwa market is going at Sh5,000 from Sh3,000 previously as demand rises.
“Most of the lemons were coming from Tanzania, but not any more formally. The local supplies have dropped as they are getting out of season,” said Ms Nyagah.
The CAS also said the demand has increased due to use as Covid-19 remedy, as it is the case with ginger. However, the price of ginger has not sky-rocketed.
At retail level, a single lemon is selling at Sh20 up from Sh10 previously forcing Kenyans to dig deeper into their pockets to afford it.
“There is high demand of the lemons right now and this is why the prices have gone up both at the wholesale and retail levels,” said Naomi Onchiri a trader in Nairobi.
The country is mainly relying on the fruits coming in from Makueni and other lower eastern Kenya locations.
The Ministry of Health last week said they had noticed a high demand of lemons and ginger. Director of Health Patrick Amoth warned Kenyans against using a concoction of lemon and ginger as a cure for Coivid-19, however, he advised them to embrace it as a means of boosting immunity.
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