Due to the monsoon, the forecast of reduction in production on a large scale in the onion producing states was already being expressed. Rating agency CRISIL was also forecasting onion prices to reach Rs 70 to 80 during the festive season. In view of this, the government imposed a duty of 40 percent on the export of onions. But this has further increased the onion crisis. Traders of onion markets have gone on strike. This blackmailing of businessmen has not affected the government, but due to this the farmers who come to sell onions in agricultural produce markets are in trouble. At the same time, in other parts of the country, due to this, the fear of increasing onion prices has started troubling.
Business stalled in Nashik mandis for two days
Most of the Agricultural Produce Marketing Committees (APMCs) in Maharashtra’s Nashik district, including the country’s largest onion market Lasalgaon, have closed onion auctions for two days. Traders are protesting against increasing export duty on onions. A meeting of traders-exporters and farmers’ representatives was held in Nashik city under the chairmanship of District Collector Jalaj Sharma, but the traders stuck to their decision not to participate in the auction.
onions stuck at ports
According to traders, lakhs of tonnes of onions are stuck at major ports of the country. In such a situation, the auction will remain closed until thousands of tonnes of onions stranded at Mumbai and other ports and on the Bangladesh border are moved without payment of export duty. However, the auction was conducted in Vinchur sub-committee of Lasalgaon APMC, where the prices ranged between Rs 800 (minimum) to Rs 2,360 (maximum). Onion prices averaged Rs 2,150 per quintal.
Maharashtra will buy two lakh metric tonnes of onion
Meanwhile, the Maharashtra government has also come into action. Amid strike by jobbers, Maharashtra Deputy Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis on Tuesday said the Center has decided to buy two lakh metric tonnes of onion at Rs 2,410 per quintal and expressed hope that it would provide some relief to onion growers. He said that special procurement centers would be set up in Nashik and Ahmednagar in the state. Apart from this, cooperative societies National Cooperative Consumers Federation of India Limited (NCCF) and National Agricultural Cooperative Marketing Federation of India Limited (NAFED) are procuring onions in Maharashtra and Madhya Pradesh.
Onion is exported to these three countries
Onion is exported on a large scale in the country. In this financial year, 9.75 lakh tonnes of onions were exported from the country between April 1 and August 4. The top three importing countries in terms of value are Bangladesh, Malaysia and the United Arab Emirates. This onion is mainly exported from the ports around Mumbai.