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Tuesday, Dec 10, 2019

Garlic follows onion up the price scale in Pune; govt lowers stock limits

State government lowers stock limit from 50 tonnes to 25 tonnes for wholesalers and five tonnes for retailers

pune Updated: Dec 05, 2019 16:12 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, Pune
Along with onion prices, garlic rates are flying below the radar, but are also on the rise across the country.
Along with onion prices, garlic rates are flying below the radar, but are also on the rise across the country.(HT/PHOTO)
         

Along with onion prices, garlic rates are flying below the radar, but are also on the rise across the country.

Milind Konde, an official of Pune’s agricultural produce market committee (APMC), said, “ Everyone is concentrating on onions, but in the last six months, rates for garlic have also increased considerably. Garlic prices in the state currently are at ~170 to ~180 per kilogramme.”

An officer of the Maharashtra State Agriculture Marketing Board (MSAMB), on condition of anonymity, said, “The MSAMB is issuing a circular to keep the agricultural produce market committees (APMC) open on all days in onion-producing areas. This will help ensure onion supply to the market. The circular will be issued in a day or two.”

To avoid stocking up of onions on December 3, the state government issued a notification bringing down the stock limit from 50 tonnes to 25 tonnes for wholesalers, and five tonnes for retailers in Maharashtra.

Jaydutta Holkar from the Lasalgaon Agriculture Produce Marketing Committee (APMC) said, “Farmers don’t have stock.”

Maharashtra does not produce garlic.

Garlic is imported from Madhya Pradesh and Gujarat. Onion prices in Mumbai as well have almost tripled — from Rs 60 on September 30 to Rs 150-160 on Wednesday — in the past two months.

Ashok Walunj, former agricultural produce market committee director and wholesale trader, said, “The extended monsoon season has destroyed the entire onion crop in the state of Maharashtra. Owing to the decreased supply of the commodity, the prices have increased to record levels not seen in the past 50 years.”

Ashok Karpe, another wholesaler, said, “The situation is bad for now, but hopefully once the imported onions arrive in the market, the prices will start falling. We are expecting onions from Egypt, Turkey and Afghanistan in large quantities. Some of it has arrived in the county and is being unloaded. It should be available in the market in around 10 days.”

The Centre used various measures to stem the rise in prices, including banning onion export, stock holding of onion, and announcing it as an essential commodity.

Onion price going north

Old (high quality) - Rs 90 to Rs 100 per kg

New (smaller in size) - Rs 60 to Rs 80 per kg

Restaurants and hotels buying onions at- Rs 130 per kg

Households buying onions at- Rs 150 per kg

Garlic rates - Rs 170 to Rs 180 per kg

Pune’s favourite dish, Misal, too stuck in the mix

Shreerang Pandit of Masti Misal, said that the street food, a simple misal, has to be priced low, even if it contains onions as the base and as an accompaniment. We try to ensure that the customer never suffers as we absorb the extra costs and don’t charge the customer for the rise in prices.

We offer misal at two places - Kothrud at 70/- and Baner at 80/-