GEORGE TOWN, Nov 23 — The recent hike in vegetable prices, of up to 200 per cent as highlighted by Consumer Association of Penang (CAP), was due to inclement weather, according to the Penang Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs (KPDNHEP) Ministry.

Penang KPDNHEP director Mohd Ridzuan Ab Ghapar said it had contacted the Agricultural Department and Federal Agricultural Marketing Authority (FAMA) over the vegetable price hike as highlighted by CAP.

“The Agricultural Department and FAMA have informed us that the hike in vegetable prices in Penang was due to the uncertain weather and rain that had affected the vegetable supply and destroyed some vegetables in farms in Cameron Highlands, Pahang,” he said in a statement issued today.

He said there was also a shortage in the supply of imported vegetables due to weather conditions such as extreme cold during winter and an increase in logistics costs from the country of origin.

“Due to this, our Enforcement Division has conducted inspections and issued notices to obtain details on the information of the prices and costs of the goods to the importers and vegetable wholesalers,” he said.

Earlier today, CAP called on the Enforcement Division of the KPDNHEP to investigate the hike in vegetable prices and to take action against traders who raised prices excessively.

CAP also called on FAMA to take control of the marketing and distribution of vegetables in the country but claimed its repeated calls on this issue have fallen on deaf ears.

In a press release today, CAP president Mohideen Abdul Kader claimed the price of vegetables has increased by up to 200 per cent over the past two weeks.

According to him, the price of vegetables such as cauliflower, choy sum, broccoli, sawi, string beans, cabbage, red chilli and green chilli had increased by 40 to 200 per cent.

He claimed the price of cauliflower has increased from RM7 to RM16; choy sum from RM3 to RM9; broccoli from RM8 to RM20; sawi from RM5 to RM8; string beans from RM8 to RM15; cabbage from RM4 to RM6; red chilli from RM13 to RM19; and green chilli from RM10 to RM14.

He said retailers complained that distributors and wholesalers have warned that other vegetable prices may also increase in the coming weeks.

Consumers with any complaints on the price of goods or services can submit their complaints to KPDNHEP here, call 1 800 886 800, send an email to [email protected] or send a WhatsApp message to 019-279 4317.