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Onion Prices Surge in Various Parts of Country; Buyers Call for Further Govt Intervention

Mumbai, Oct 30. Buyers have expressed concern over the rising onion prices in several parts of the country and urged the government to take additional steps to bring it down. The price of onion has touched Rs 80 per kg in Mumbai.

The government recently imposed Minimum Export Price for onions and procurement of additional 2 lakh tonnes of onion for buffer stocks.

A buyer in Mumbai said, “The prices of onions have increased so much. The rate is Rs 80 per kg. It may go up to Rs 150. We request the government to decrease prices.”

Meanwhile, in other parts of the country, such as Uttar Pradesh’s Agra, a vegetable seller Manoj stated said prices have soared due to the shortage in supply.

“We are getting onions for Rs 60 to 65 from mandi. Customers are not buying the onions due to rising costs. There is a shortage of supply too,” he said.

Akhilesh Kumar, who came to purchase vegetables at a mandi in Agra said, “Onion prices are too high. Our consumption of onions has decreased. Earlier we used to take 1-2 kgs. Now we are just buying 250 gm. Currently, the prices are around Rs 80 per kg.”

Rahul, a vegetable seller in Kanpur, requested the intervention of the government and said that the stock has been destroyed due to recent rains.

“The main reason for the rise in prices is the heavy rains. All stock has been destroyed. There is a shortage of supply. Going forward, onion prices will continue to rise. I request the government to intervene in this situation,” he said.

Earlier, the Union Government on Saturday notified the minimum export price (MEP) of USD 800 per Metric Ton (MT) on a FOB basis for the export of onions, with effect from October 29 to December 31, 2023.

The measure has been taken to maintain sufficient availability of onion to domestic consumers at affordable prices as the quantity of stored rabi 2023 onion is declining.

The MEP of USD 800 per MT translates into about Rs 67 per kg.

Along with the decision to impose MEP on onion exports, the government has also announced the procurement of an additional 2 lakh tonnes of onion for the buffer, over and above the 5 lakh tonnes already procured.

Onion from the buffer has been disposed of continuously since the second week of August in major consumption centres all over the country and also supplied to retail consumers at Rs 25/kg through mobile vans operated by NCCF and NAFED. To date, about 1.70 lakh Metric Tons of onion have been disposed of from the buffer.

The continuous procurement and disposal of onion from the buffer are undertaken to moderate the prices for consumers while ensuring remunerative prices for the onion farmers. The decision to impose an MEP of USD 800 per MT shows the determination of the government to keep onions affordable to domestic consumers.

Earlier, the government said that it has procured over 5.07 lakh metric tonnes of onion and is all set to procure another 3 lakh metric tonnes in the days to come, which will help keep the price under control.

The government has disposed of over 1.74 lakh metric tonnes of onion in wholesale markets of Delhi, Haryana, Karnataka, Odisha, Tamil Nadu, Uttar Pradesh, Chandigarh, West Bengal, Telangana, Uttarakhand, Bihar, Assam and Uttarakhand, the official said, adding that the prices of onion will start declining in the coming days.

According to the official, the retail price matrix got disturbed due to the fall in the arrival of onions in Mandis.

“Still, the price of onions is much lower in comparison to 2021, when onion prices crossed the Rs 100 mark,” the official added. (ANI)

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