Mumbai: Onion prices are about to hit a double century soon. Supply of onions has reduced by almost 80 per cent, resulting in their prices skyrocketing across the country.
Asia’s largest onion market, Lasalgaon, received a mere 5,200 quintals of onion on Thursday against its daily average supply of 12,000 to 15, 000 quintals.
The price at the Lasalgaon market was `10,000 per quintal, while at the Vashi market near Mumbai, onions were sold at a minimum of `80 and a maximum of `130 per kg. In the retail market, onion is being sold at `140 to `160 per kg.
“The untimely rainfall and hailstorm is a major reason behind rising onion prices. The rainfall has not only damaged the old buffer onion stock but also the new arrivals,” said Nanasaheb Patil, former chairman of Lasalgaon Agriculture Produce Market Committee (APMC).
Lasalgaon is 200 km from Mumbai and is known for supplying onions across the country. “The prices of onion will cool down by mid-January 2020 while it will stabilise in February-end or the fir-st week of March 2020. The Central government may import onions but the demand is so high that it will not be easy to bring down onion prices soon,” Mr Patil added.
Ashok Walunje, onion wholesale trader at Vashi APMC, said onions from Turkmenistan and Egypt are in the market but there are hardly any takers for them.
“The tastes of the imported onions do not match our Indian onions, particularly the Nashik onion. Our onions can be used in gravies, masalas and salads,” Mr Walunje said. Mr Patil blamed untimely rains and bad w-eather for the disruption in the onion supply cycle.