Nashik's onion growers are once again in trouble. The onion, which was fetching Rs 70-80 per kg last month, was being sold at Rs 50 per kg last week and is now trading at Rs 10-30 per kg. Summer onions fetch up to Rs 10 per kg and fresh red onions up to Rs 30 per kg. This has triggered the onion growers and traders to make a fresh demand with the Centre for an immediate lifting of ban on onion export. Farmers warned that they will have to go in for distress onion sales if the fresh arrival of onions continues and the export ban is not lifted.
This is because of the arrival of fresh onion and the unsold onion which was grown in March. The prices, which were Rs 5,000 per quintal, are now ranging between Rs 1,500 and 3,000 per quintal in Nashik district which is one of the leading onion producers and suppliers at the national level.
Nashik based leading onion grower Jayadatta Holksar told Free Press Journal, “In Nashik daily arrival of onion is 1 lakh quintal but the onion is sold at a lower price, so the daily loss incurred by farmers is of about Rs 30 crore. The farmers are demanding immediate lifting of the export ban by the Centre. On the one hand, the market is flooded by fresh onion arrival; on the other hand the import is still on. The farmers are at loss and therefore the Centre’s early intervention is necessary.” He said there is less demand for onion from Nashik especially in the neighbouring Karnataka as the local supply is adequate to meet its demand.
Incidentally, BJP MP Bharati Pawar from Dindori seat in Nashik district has urged the union minister of commerce Piyush Goyal to lift the ban on the export of onions at the earliest.