Onion prices likely to slump to Rs 5-10/kg

Retail prices of onions are likely to slump to Rs 5 to Rs 10 per kg in the coming days, down from the current  Rs 15/kg.

The wholesale prices of onion have gradually come down, falling between Rs 600 and Rs 1,000 per quintal. At Hopcoms counters, the price hit Rs 18/kg.

The price crash is huge considering that onion was sold at Rs 40 to Rs 50 per kg as recently as in January. What has changed over the past three months is the increased supply of onion from within Karnataka as well as the arrival of the produce from other states.

"Onion from other states is arriving now. Over the next two months, we expect the prices to go down further," said B Ravishankar, director, Bangalore Potato and Onion Traders' Association.

According to him, drought in the last three years had forced farmers in Chitradurga and Challakere to limit to one crop.

"The good Northeast monsoon last year yielded a second crop, leading to increased supply in the market," he added.

Ravishankar said the price crash would get worse as farmers in Maharashtra, Rajasthan, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Bihar, West Bengal, Andhra Pradesh and elsewhere had seen a bumper yield.

"Usually, by April we get onions from Maharashtra. This year, 70% of the supply is still coming from Karnataka," he added.  

Kumar, a wholesaler at the Yeshwantpur APMC, said farmers from Maharashtra spend Rs 3/kg and those from Karnataka Re 1/kg on transporting the produce.

"If the price comes down further, farmers will be in trouble," he said.

Agriculture Price Commission president Prakash Kammardi said they had written to the Centre seeking the minimum support price for onion.

"We have requested the Centre to make up for the cost difference. Maharashtra has already introduced it on a pilot basis. They should implement it in Karnataka, too," Kammardi added.

 

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