One of the busiest and most crowded areas during Ramadan is the Malé local market. There is an abundance of produce available at the same place; however, a lot of these items are imported.
This does not mean that local produce is not available in the "local market" either. There is a big variety that is solely purchased from local farmers. Watermelon, mangoes, chilies, cucumbers, and collard greens are among the most commonly grown crops in the Maldives today.
The price of watermelons, which are in high demand during Ramadan, is currently between MVR 25 and MVR 30 at the local market. However, the price is higher in Hulhumalé, where watermelons cost MVR 50 per kg at the market.
A local trader, who owns a stall in the Malé market, said that there are no difficulties in getting watermelon. However, the prices from farmers in Alifu Alifu atoll Thoddhoo, and Laamu atoll are expensive; and these are the islands where large yields are harvested. That is why they have no option but to sell it to the public at higher prices, he said.
He said he would know only after a week whether the prices were going to change. The amount of produce being brought to the market can only be evaluated after some time has passed, he said.
Although watermelons are thriving in the market, the current prices are higher than they were last Ramadan.
Local mangoes, which are another popular item during Ramadan, are also available in the market, priced between MVR 70 and MVR 120 per kg of mangoes.
This year's fasting month has seen a rise in the prices of the most commonly consumed products on the market.