Fearing export ban, traditional onion buyers abroad switch to other origins

  With traditional prospective buyers of Indian onions hesitating to location orders in view of


With traditional prospective buyers of Indian onions hesitating to location orders in view of the Centre banning exports in September last yr and in December 2019, onion price ranges have dropped about 10 per cent considering the fact that the commencing of July.

“Our prospective buyers overseas are not positioning orders for onions, pointing to the ban Centre imposed all-around September last yr and the yr just before. They have currently switched over to other origins,” explained Ajit Shah, President, Horticulture Deliver Exporters Affiliation (HPEA).

Buyers are not contemplating even positioning orders in the small-phrase, he explained.

Pakistan’s benefit

The other motive why Indian onion is conference with lukewarm desire in the world sector is that the Pakistan commodity is aggressive.

“Pakistan is featuring onion at fees decrease than India. This has slowed down our exports,” Sohanlal Bhandari, Chairman, Nashik District Onion Traders Affiliation.

Shah explained Indian onion is quoted, dependent on top quality, at $320-fifty (₹23,800-26,050) a tonne free-on-board when compared with Pakistan’s $320 (₹23,800) a tonne, cost and freight. “Pakistan onion is decrease by $75 (₹5,600) a tonne and it is out there for more than 250 times in a yr now,” he explained.

Pakistan also enjoys the benefit of a weak forex against the US greenback. This tends to make onion from the neighbouring region much less expensive in greenback terms.



Payment troubles

“Onion exports have slowed down to countries these as Sri Lanka and Malaysia because of to payment troubles and Covid pandemic,” explained M Madan Prakash, President, Agri Commodities Exporters Affiliation (ACEA).

Even though 125 containers of the bulb a short while ago went from India to Colombo, prospective buyers confronted troubles in spending considering the fact that Sri Lanka is struggling with international exchange disaster, Prakash explained, including that Malaysia has cut its buys because of to Covid restrictions in that country.

The ACEA President explained that onion price ranges could occur under stress following thirty day period considering the fact that the new onion crop will arrive in the markets from Karnataka. “Arrivals of the new crop will commence in two-3 weeks,” he explained.

Repeat condition unlikely

“This yr, we may possibly not encounter the condition we practical experience in 2019 and 2020. We have experienced good rains in rising areas of Maharashtra and the early Kharif onion arrivals could commence in September. By October, arrivals could be in complete swing,” explained Suvarna Jagtap, Chairperson, Lasalgaon Agricultural Deliver Marketing Committee (APMC).

Rates have also been ruling secure this yr in the domestic sector with the sector going possibly way by ₹200 or ₹300 a quintal, she explained.

Presently, tremendous top quality onion in Lasalgaon APMC, Asia’s biggest for the commodity, is about ₹2,000 a quintal against ₹2,two hundred at the start of the thirty day period. The modal price tag (the price at which most trades took location) of good ordinary top quality (FAQ) onion at the APMC on Wednesday was ₹1,590 a quintal when compared with one,720 on July two.

Rivals hike crop acreage

Throughout the exact same time last yr, price ranges of FAQ onion at Lasalgaon dominated under ₹750. In retail markets on Wednesday, onion, which topped ₹100 a kg in October last yr, dominated at ₹35 in New Delhi and ₹28 in Mumbai, in accordance to the Ministry of Consumer Affairs.

“India’s frequent onion export ban has resulted in competing nations these as Pakistan, Iraq and Turkey to improve the region under the crop. The Centre’s advertisement hoc coverage of suddenly banning exports is hampering shipments,” explained HCEA’s Shah.

Suvarna Jagtap explained that onion price ranges are not witnessing any spike regardless of arrivals dropping by 50 percent. “At Lasalgaon APMC, arrivals are at present two,000-two,five hundred tonnes against 4,000-five,000 tonnes early this thirty day period,” she explained.

The easing of Covid shutdown restrictions and opening of resorts and places to eat could see a increase in desire for onion, the Lasalgaon APMC Chairperson explained.

Previous yr, exports experienced topped 2019 stages by September just before the Centre banned the shipments immediately after retail price ranges topped ₹100 a kg. The Union Govt also permitted obligation-free imports and imposed a cap on stock holdings, apart from the ban, to command the price ranges.

Rates rose immediately after the crop was influenced by unseasonal rains in August and then in October last yr. But the higher price ranges inspired growers to plant more onion seedlings.

According to the Ministry of Agriculture, onion output was a record 26.92 million tonnes (mt) last year (July 2020-June 2021) when compared with 26.09 mt the past year with the region under the crop rising to one.six million hectares (mh) from one.43 mh.