Is Sri Lanka government dumping tomatoes because it is unable to help local farmers sell their produce?

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An image of a truck emptying out tomatoes onto a field is being shared thousands of times on Facebook with claims that it shows the inability of Sri Lankan government to help farmers in selling their produce amidst the lockdown. The post is being shared in the Sinhalese language and the image is as follows:

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The caption in Sinhalese translates into: “Inability of rulers. Only thefters have forgotten the innocent farmers.”

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The above image when run through a Google reverse image search lead to an article published by The Guardian on October 2017. The article is titled, “Almost 90% of edible tomatoes thrown away based on appearance – research. Up to 86.7% of harvest rejected, environmental scientist says – underlining Australia’s costly food waste culture.”

The image in circulation was featured in the above article. A screenshot of the same is follows:
A simple search of the University of Sunshine Coast as mentioned in the caption highlighted above shows that the university is located in Australia. Therefore it can be confirmed that the above image is not from Sri Lanka but is from Australia and is not from 2020 but from 2017. A comparison of the featured image and the viral image  is as follows:

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Sai Keerthi

A spark of curiosity that buzzes around. Authoring your next coffee table book. Journalist.