Fruit and vegetables at 99 cents: what’s behind it
The practice of selling fruit and vegetables for only 99 cents is an increasingly popular practice in recent years. While it may seem like a tempting offer for consumers, this pricing policy has it significant consequences on the agricultural industry and local communities. Understanding what is behind these offers means becoming more responsible consumers and attentive to collective well-being. Unfortunately, however, it is not difficult to realize that the “moral” aspect often clashes with economic needs.
The impact on producers
For agricultural producers, selling fruit and vegetables for 99 cents presents an economic challenge. These low prices reduce profit margins and put the sustainability of companies at risk. Manufacturers are forced to save costs, which can lead to quality reduction or the use of unsustainable agricultural practices. Often the ones who pay the price are the workers themselves, forced to fast paced work and minimum wages.
Also, the large supermarket chains they often impose low prices on producers, making it difficult for them to resist this policy.
The impact on product quality
When fruits and vegetables are sold at such low prices, it can affect the quality of products available in the market. From the harvested before full ripening until using conservation methods in the long run, all these practices could affect the taste and nutritional values of fruits and vegetables. As a result, consumers are often faced with the choice between cheap but inferior products and more expensive but higher quality products.
A clear explanation is given by the staff of the Ortomercato of Milan to Altroconsumo: “we must remember that a single category of fruit and vegetables is not sold on the market. The price depends on the size, appearance, origin, when the harvest took place and how many days the goods are in the warehouse”. This explains how some outlets are able to hold such low and competitive prices also for fruit and vegetables of Italian origin.
The impact on local communities
Selling fruit and vegetables for 99 cents can also have negative consequences on local communities. Many small producers and local markets they are unable to compete with the prices of the large supermarket chains. This leads to a decrease in demand and profitability for local producers, putting a risk agricultural diversity and the sustainability of rural communities. Furthermore, excessive dependence on cheap products imported from other regions or countries can harm the local economy and food security.
The sale of fruit and vegetables for 99 cents it may seem convenient for consumers, but has a significant impact on the agricultural industry and local communities. It is important to consider the long-term consequences of this pricing policy and to support local producers, promoting sustainable production and ensuring the quality and freshness of the products we consume.
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