Lack of demand removes Pulasa off the menu - The Hindu

The COVID-19 pandemic, which has severely impacted various sectors, has not spared the ‘Pulasa’ too.

‘Pulasa’, a premium and much sought-after fish, is available in the East and West Godavari districts during the rainy season. The seasonal species is costlier than all other varieties available in the market.

The menu in parties and family get-togethers is incomplete without the delicious ‘Pulasa curry’.

The fish is exported to Hyderabad, Bengaluru, Chennai, Pune, Mumbai and other cities.

“A Pulasa that weighs between 750 grams and 1 kg is normally sold for ₹4,000. But now, its price has crashed to as low as ₹1,200 as there are no buyers. The previous year too, the pandemic severely hit the sale of Pulasa,” said a fisherwoman, G. Lakshmi, of Elamanchili.

Fishermen who catch Pulasa in their nets during fishing in the rainy season will make a fortune. It has good demand in the markets at Amalapuram, Ravulapalem, Dowleswaram, Rajahmundry, Siddantam, Chinchinada, Palakol, Narsapuram, Mogalturu and some island villages.

The price of Pulasa varies depending on its size and availability, and there are instances when it is sold for more than ₹10,000.

“A few food lovers purchase it whatever be the price,” said Ch. Suryanarayana, a farmer of Narsapuram.

“There is no fixed price. It depends on the catch and the demand in the market. NRIs make it a point to visit their native places in the Godavari districts to taste the mouthwatering Pulasa curry,” said a fish exporter, R. Rama Rao.

“We catch the fish in fresh waters in the Godavari’s tributaries such as Vasishta, Gauthami and Vainateya. If a fisherman catches Pulasa, it fetches ₹5,000 or more. Earlier, food lovers used to pay advance to buy Pulasa. But now, the situation has changed due to COVID-19,” said another fisherman, Setti Rambabu.

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