Catering to the Sabarimala pilgrim demand, the primary market dealers in black pepper is focusing more on retail market due to a better price realisation.

Traders pointed out that there has been a good buying of black pepper from pilgrims in the three districts of Idukki, Pathanamthitta and Kottayam in the last few days at a retail price of Rs450-500 per kg, whereas the average price realisation in Kochi wholesale trade on Monday was Rs333 per kg, which remain unchanged in the last couple of days. The retail sales in these three districts was 15 tonnes per day.

There were even enquiries from primary markets for quality pepper even at Rs345 wholesale rate, they added.

Meanwhile, the Kochi pepper marketremained unchanged in the last three days because of limited trading with the average price of ungarbled stood at Rs333 per kg. The quantity arrived was 28 tonnes and there are more sellers from Coorg and importers who find this current market rates attractive.

Kishore Shamji of Kishor Spices said that inter-state dealers who have committed for delivery are finding difficulties to cover. They have made commitments during the last three weeks between Rs305 per kg for 500 gl pepper, Rs325-330 for 525 gl pepper and Rs340 for 550 gl pepper. Therefore there are more buyers for physical pepper in the spot market, he said.

MG1 garbled variety quoted at Rs353 per kg. New pepper was settled at Rs318.

Trade analysts Acumen Capital Markets said that pepper December futures is showing some weakness on daily chart and the prices remain unchanged at Rs317.90 per kg.