Prices of many products had returned to normal pre-Tet levels as of Sunday, the eighth day of the Lunar New Year, but the popular food items or those for worship rituals are still expensive.
At some of HCMC-based markets like Ba Chieu in Binh Thanh District, Cay Thi in Go Vap District and Vuon Lai in District 12, prices of beef, shrimp, crab, squid, mackerel and a number of fruits such as custard-apple, dragon fruit, papaya, mango and watermelon remained exorbitant, even higher than the prices in the final days before Tet.
For instance, first-grade beef fillet was sold at VND300,000-320,000 per kilo, or VND100,000 higher than normal, while stir-fried beef was quoted at VND190,000-210,000 a kilo, VND20,000 higher. Prices of mackerel ranged from VND195,000 to VND210,000 per kilo and live chicken VND140,000-180,000.
A beef seller named Ha at Cay Thi Market said she did not buy certain kinds of beef because their prices were too high.
Similarly, fruits necessary for worship rituals were sold at steep prices.
Custard-apple stayed at VND80,000 per kilo and dragon fruit at VND40,000-50,000. Meanwhile, Hoa Loc mango, Lai Vung tangerine and Long An watermelon had respective prices of VND70,000-80,000, VND55,000-60,000 and VND20,000 per kilo.
Mai, owner of a fruit stall on Duong Quang Ham Street, noted fruit prices after Tet were even higher than the pre-Tet levels.
However, the aforementioned items had much more reasonable prices at supermarkets. For example, at Co.opMart Phan Van Tri in Go Vap District, custard-apple was priced at VND50,000 a kilo, Hoa Loc mango VND53,500 and dragon fruit VND26,000.
At Satrafoods No Trang Long in Binh Thanh District, mackerel was sold at VND187,000 per kilo and pomfret at VND94,000.
The number of shoppers at supermarkets and convenience stores was quite large. At some stores like Satrafoods No Trang Long, there was still an undersupply of certain products because many suppliers were still having their holiday break.
Prices of essential food items for daily meals had returned to normal levels. Snakehead fish sold for VND55,000-60,000 per kilo, pork thigh VND85,000, prawn VND140,000 and Dalat lettuce VND30,000.
The Saigon Times Daily