Still waiting for local seasonal fruits

Tan showing rambutan sourced from Johor at his stall in Batu Lanchang Market. — K.T. GOH/The Star

LOCAL tropical fruits will make an appearance soon in Penang but for now, seasonal favourites like rambutan, langsat and cempedak will have to be sourced from Thailand and neighbouring states.

Fruit seller Tan Ah Lum, 75, who operates a stall at Batu Lanchang Market in Penang, said sellers were now getting these fruits from a supplier who gets stock from Thailand and states including Johor.

“These fruits are now ripening in Thailand but here, we have not received news from our Penang suppliers yet.

“The stock of tropical fruits we get may sometimes be plentiful and other times may not suffice, ” he said.

Another fruit seller, Cynthia Gan, 70, said while there are many customers looking for rambutan and langsat now, all the sellers have are supplies sourced from Thailand.

“Most customers will still buy them, especially those who crave these fruits, but some may find the prices are slightly higher than usual.

“Depending on the supply, the prices can sometimes go up to RM12 per kg, ” she added.

Fruit seller Natasha Mohd Azmi, 24, operates a stall in Bayan Lepas and sources from a local supplier with orchards in Balik Pulau.

She said there were now no local supply of rambutan and langsat yet.

“The suppliers in Balik Pulau told us that the season for rambutan and langsat will come later in July near the mid-durian season or after the durian season.

“But we do still sell these fruits, depending on what we can get from Thailand.

“The mangosteen, rambutan and langsat we sell now are all from Thailand, ” she said.

For now, the only seasonal local fruit available is cempedak.

“But that too depends on the supply, ” said Natasha.

“Some suppliers have more, some have less and besides us, they have to supply to other sellers as well.

“So we take a moderate stock to ensure we are able to sell what we get, ” she added.

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