During the Spring Festival, vegetable prices in the Xinfadi Market stayed at a medium level compared with areas across China and saw a surge followed by a fall. From the second day of the Chinese New Year (January 26th), the wholesale price started to rise, reaching the highest point on the fourth day of the New Year (January 29th) at 3.77 yuan per kilogram, a peak level for the recent five years. The Market urgently called vendors back to business to ensure stable supply and pricing, so after the fifth day of the New Year (January 30), prices quickly fell to about 3 yuan per kilogram.
Four vegetables saw the largest increase in pricing: cabbage, Chinese cabbage which rose from 1 yuan to 3 yuan per half a kilo, white radish which rose from 0.8 or 0.9 yuan to 3 yuan per half a kilo, and cauliflower. Historically, a considerable share of these vegetables was supplied to the Beijing market from Hubei, accounting for about 60% of cabbage, 50% of Chinese cabbage, 30% of white radish, and 45% of cauliflower.
The increase in purchase prices was mainly due to shifts in the supply structure. For example, cabbages that are currently in noticeable short supply are shipped from Xichang in Sichuan, a few greenhouses in the north, and Fujian production areas that originally don’t ship cabbages to Beijing during the Spring Festival. However, the shifts are temporary. Usually, Hubei supplies the Beijing market from December to March of the following year, so the tension in the supply and pricing of these vegetables is expected to ease in the coming months.
Source: Chinese Vegetables