Niche Agriculture

Onion and potato prices hit the roof in festive season

Despite being the Navaratra season, onion costs have gone up to Rs 70 per kg within the retail market. The price of potato is also increasing. It is being sold at Rs 50-60 per kg in retail. The supply of onions at the Azadpur wholesale market has been hit because of the rain within the areas where they are produced, counting south India. The discount costs of onions have expanded from Rs 20-30 to Rs 45-55 of late.

Srikant Mishra of Azadpur Union Traders Affiliation said the supply of onions at the wholesale market had come down to nearly half and there was no prompt hope of it improving. “On Thursday, the wholesale rate of onion extended from Rs 40-60 per kg, which was Rs 25-40 per kg over a week ago,” said Mishra.

Currently, only around 25 trucks of onions are being provided to the Azadpur market each day, which was 50 to 60 trucks 10 days back. A dealer said the supply begun drying up due to unseasonal downpours in Maharashtra and Karnataka, which damaged the onion crops and affected supply. In September-October, fresh stocks of onions usually begin arriving from Karnataka and Maharashtra, which has not been conceivable this year.

“The supply of onions from Alwar will begin soon but that will not be satisfactory to meet the huge demands. The prices of onions may remain high for some time,” said Mishra. The onions from Palwal, the supply of which has been delayed, will also begin arriving soon.The hike in wholesale costs is having ripple impacts over the retail markets in Delhi and NCR. On Thursday, different markets in Rohini, Vasant Kunj, East Delhi, Dwarka, and other areas saw onions being sold at Rs 60-70 per kg. “Navaratra is a period when the demand of onions plunges since numerous families avoid eating onions amid the nine days celebration. Despite that, better-quality onions are being sold at Rs 70 and over. It may increment further,” said Md Firoz, a retailer in Laxmi Nagar.

Meanwhile, traders said the wholesale costs of potatoes that ranged from Rs 25-35 per kg 10 days back, had gone up to Rs 40-50 per kg. “The supply of potatoes from Karnataka, which usually begins early October, has been hit this year due to unseasonal downpours. The potato stocks were low due to downpours in March-April in Punjab,” a dealer said. A decrease in potato prices is anticipated in a couple of weeks when its supply from Punjab begins amid Diwali.

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