Celebration of the vegetarian festival this year in most popular cities across the country with large Chinese communities will be a much smaller and quieter event as it falls at exactly the same time as the royal funeral of the beloved late King Bhumibol Adulyadej.
The religious vegetarian festival kicks off from October 20 to 28 while the royal funeral begins October 25 to 29.
But as the vegetarian festival will begin tomorrow Friday, sign of the once colourful and lively event in the past years in most southern cities won’t be seen as people will celebrate quietly at homes in tribute to the beloved late King.
Traders also reported less sale of vegetables this year although some began to observe the celebration.
Prices of vegetables have gone up prior to the festival with most traders citing high transportation cost and massive flooding of farmlands as main reasons.
One trader at Hat Yai’s Kimyong fresh market Mrs Urai Ditsuwan said although it is now the vegetarian festival now, people still spend less than previous year.
She said vegetable prices have gone up a week before as wholesalers claimed higher transportation cost caused by massive flooding in several regions.
Chinese Kale goes up from 40-50 baht to 60 baht, Chinese cabbage from 30-40 baht to 50 baht and cabbage from 40 baht to 50 baht.
In Satun, most traders also reported quiet selling in the fresh market.
One reason is flooding which has caused vegetable transported from Bangkok to the southern cities to get rotten.
She cited example of less than half of ordered vegetables could be put on sale while the rest were rotten.
This forced her to put together all mixed vegetables and sell in one package for 20 baht.
A chicken seller at Sapsin Plaza in Singkhla, meanwhile, reported less sale of chicken from 300-400 baht to 200 kilos a day during the festival, while another butcher also said he has to order less meat to sell as people turn to vegetarian food.