After export ban, onion prices fall below Rs 30/kg at Lasalgaon

Mumbai: Onion prices declined below Rs 30 per kg level at Lasalgaon in Maharasthra, Asia's largest wholesale market for the bulb crop, after the government banned export and imposed stock limit on traders.

The maximum wholesale rate of onion at Lasalgaon in Nasik district have declined from the peak of Rs 51 per kg during mid-September, according to the data maintained by the National Horticulture Research and Development Foundation (NHRDF).

It may be noted that Lasalgaon mandi sets price trend across the country. Any fluctuation in this market reflects in other parts of the country.

The average wholesale price of onion was Rs 26 per kg on Thursday at the Lasalgaon Agriculture Produce Market Committee, while the maximum rate was Rs 30.20 per kg and minimum rate quoted was Rs 15 per kg.

Onion prices have been on a rise since August, as floods in key growing states especially Maharasthra and Karnataka disrupted supplies. The likely fall in area sown to kharif onion further put pressure on prices.

Right now, stored onion from rabi crop of last year is being sold in the market. The fresh kharif crop is expected to hit the market from November onwards.

Since onion has been a politically sensitive crop, the government has taken several measures to boost the supply in the domestic market and contain price rise in retail markets, where the rates have shot up to Rs 60-70 per kg in the national capital and other parts.

To give relief to consumers in Delhi and NCR, cooperatives National Agricultural Cooperative Marketing Federation of India Ltd (Nafed) and the National Cooperative Consumers' Federation (NCCF) as well as state run Mother Dairy are selling the buffer onion at a cheaper rate of Rs 23.90 per kg.

Other state governments have also been offered buffer stock onion maintained by the central government.

Last week, the government banned export of onion and imposed stock limit on traders.

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Free Press Journal