Desperate times calls for innovative and creative selling modes. As they say, when the going gets tough, the tough get going.
Selling things by the roadside or near traffic lights has become a common feature in some towns in the country.
These peddlers mostly sell pickled fruits or cut fruits and can be seen wearing a placard around their necks to promote their food items to motorists waiting at the traffic lights.
The placards provide details of the food item being offered and the price.
They walk up and down the length of the road and road shoulder offering the food items in the hot sun. They are at the junctions most of the time and work in groups of three or four.
Some of the motorists buy from these peddlers and it gives them hope and impetus to carry on their business at road junctions.
In Seremban, these peddlers can be seen at the junction leading to the PLUS highway – selling pickled mangoes in plastic containers at RM10 each.
They have to brave the weather and the traffic during peak hours holding a few plastic bags.
They do not harass drivers to buy their foodstuff and are quite professional in their endeavour. They simply display their foodstuff to the drivers and rush over whenever a driver signals them.
I have seen these peddlers quite often whenever I use the road either in the morning, afternoon or evening.
They are hardworking and enterprising, and earning an honest living when everyone is going through bad economic times.
I was in awe of their creativity and boldness until I read in the media that it was an offence to peddle at road intersections.
And I read reports of peddlers at road junctions in Ipoh and Taiping being fined from RM200 to RM2,000 for touting and selling foodstuff at road junctions.
Hopefully, these young peddlers in Seremban will be advised by the police to sell their foodstuff at stalls or other safer platforms.
It would be cruel to fine them under the Road Traffic Rules without letting them know that it is an offence to sell at road intersections.
This has been going on for a few months now and no one has stopped them from selling their foodstuff.
Suddenly clamping down on their business with a fine would dampen their spirit and drive.
Provide them alternative safer spots to sell their foodstuff.