(MENAFN - Arab News) The onset of winter in the Kingdom witnesses a flourishing firewood and coal trade given the low temperatures although its volume varies in different parts of the country.
Prices of firewood in coastal cities are much lower compared to the mountainous and arid regions. In Madinah for example, where there is a significant drop in temperatures, firewood and coal are in high demand with wood being most popular, particularly Qhardh and Samr, which are considered to be of the finest quality. "These types of wood come from an arid environment and therefore the logs are solid and strong which indicates quality," said Fawwaz Al-Harbi, a trader.
A firewood and coal trader Muawad Al-Muzaini said that this quality of wood is pricier than others because of its ability to retain heat longer.
"Demand is higher in the early winter season which is called the Al-Marbaniya season, the traditional name for this time of the year. The demand for wood brings along with it the sales of appliances including coal holders, coal tongs and other related items," he said.
Al-Muzaini said that he receives coal and wood in large unseemly blocks which have to be cleaned before they can be used. His workers chop them into smaller pieces and clean them before displaying them to customers.
Humaidan Al-Harbi, a customer said he buys traditional coal because his parents prefer it to heat their homes, adding that he thought the prices were reasonable. "What was being sold at SR80 before is now selling at a little less than SR120."
Although the government is moving toward limiting the sales of locally produced wood to preserve the environment, people continue to prefer this quality of firewood to the imported variety from neighboring countries.