Millennium Post

Onion prices may touch 3-digit mark during Pujas

Kolkata: Onion prices may touch the three-digit mark during the Durga Puja this year. Consumers are expected to feel the pinch as onion producing regions have received excess rainfall in the past two days.

It was only past month when onion, one of the prime components for chicken, mutton and fish dishes, was

priced between Rs 25 and 30 per kg.

Today, the retail price of one kg of onion has shot up to Rs 54 for red onion of very good quality to Rs 50 for average quality. Depending upon the quality, onion prices vary in the market.

Dealers have hinted that the prices of onion is expected to rise till Diwali as fresh kharif (summer) crop will hit the market from November onwards.

"Every year, there is huge demand of onions during Durga Puja because temporary food stalls along the roads buy onions in large quantity. This year, the market is expected to be down because of sky rocketing prices of onions," said Bishal, who sells at Sealdah's Koley market.

Lasalgaon Mandi in Nashik, Asia's largest market yard for the bulb, supplies onions round the year to Bengal. This apart, Bengal also imports onions from Andhra Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh.

"In August, there was shortage of onions in the market due to flood in Nashik, Maharashtra. Then, the cost of one sack (around 40 kg) of onions has shot up from Rs 1,300 (average quality onion) to Rs 1,500. Today (September 23), cost of one sack is Rs 1,480 (average quality onion) and Rs 1,800 (Red Onion - very good quality)," Bishal said.

The retailers buy the onion sacks as per their requirement from the wholesalers and sell it to the customers.

"Consumers are buying half of their required quantity. The regular quality onion is priced at Rs 50 and the high quality onion is priced is Rs 54 and above. The prices are expected to rise more in the near future," said Ram Bharose, an onion vendor at Koley market.

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