Chand: Being a market vendor is ‘challenging’

Bobby Chand at his fruit stall at the Suva Municipal Market yesterday. Picture: ATU RASEA

Bobby Chand at his fruit stall at the Suva Municipal Market yesterday. Picture: ATU RASEA

FULL-TIME market vendor Bobby Chand, 56, of Tamavua says he grew up in the Suva market.

“My father operated these market stalls when I was very small and this is where I grew up; under the watchful eyes and guidance of my father,” the second generation market vendor said.

He said being a market vendor was a challenging job.

“Because we have to ensure that we sell whatever we buy because if not, we lose out.

“As you can see right now some of the market stalls are empty because market vendors who come late don’t get anything to sell,” Mr Chand said.

“People who come early get all the supplies and they are able to sell it.”

He said the market business was up and down and one would have to just stay the course.

“When it’s good, it’s good, sometimes business is slack,” he said.

“Sales depend on a good market week, that’s why I said it was very challenging because in a good week I can make about $300 to $400 net profit,” Mr Chand said.

He said he operated 15 stalls under the business name Chand’s Fruit Market selling fruits such as oranges, grapes, and apples and pear which he bought from Turners and Growers Fiji and he also sold watermelons which were in season.

“I’m a full time vendor and this is my only source of income so I always ensure that the business runs smoothly without any problems,” Mr Chand said.

He said he sold mostly fruits although he did sell some vegetables at times.

“I’m a middleman; I buy and sell. I get most of my fruits from Turners and Growers at a cost and I then put a small profit margin on top and I resell to the public.

“This is of course to ensure that I make enough for my business and family to survive.”

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