The arrival of locally-grown onions has drastically come down at the APMC in Hubballi this season, and its quality has also been hit due to heavy rains.
The price of top-quality onions in the retail market is slowly rising due to the shortage of good quality local onions while the quantity of onions harvested in summer and coming from Maharashtra has increased.
Onion, being a major ingredient in food, both in hotels and households, its price is a matter regarding which citizens are often concerned. After heavy and incessant rain hit both the quality and quantity of the crop in the region this time, local onion has lost its sheen while the ‘Puna’ variety from the neighbouring state is fetching a better price.
The Hubballi APMC, a major market for onions, is getting very less quantity of locally-grown onions, compared to the corresponding season of the previous year.
As moisture created by incessant rain this time has also hit the quality of onion, farmers are getting less price for the crop. However, the quantity of stored summer onion coming from Maharashtra (Puna variety) has increased this time.
This has shown its impact on the retail market also as the price of good quality onion (mainly Puna variety) is slowly increasing and it has crossed Rs 40 per kg.
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The arrival of onions at the APMC this time has been less than 50% of what it used to get in the harvest season of late October and early November in previous years. Due to the quality affected by moisture, the price of local onions is also less compared to last year.
From October 15 to November 15 in 2021, a total of 2.09 lakh quintals of onion were purchased at the APMC. It included 1.85 lakh quintal of local onion only, with an average (model) price of Rs 1,310 per quintal (Rs 200 minimum, Rs 3,600 maximum). As much as 16,981 quintal of Puna onions were purchased at a model price of Rs 1,495 (Rs 600 minimum, Rs 4,000 maximum).
The situation in the same period this time is totally different as the arrival of onions in total has been only 1.07 lakh quintal. This includes 71,957 quintal of local onions with only Rs 877 model price (Rs 150 minimum, Rs 2,300 maximum). The arrival of Puna onions has increased to 33,515 quintal with Rs 1,425 model price (Rs 500 minimum, Rs 4,000 maximum). The arrival and price of Telagi onions from Vijayapur is also less this time.
“Due to less arrival and low quality of onions grown in Dharwad, Bagalkot, and Belagavi districts, we are not able to export onions. We are managing the supply to the domestic market only because more onions are coming from Maharashtra this time. Fresh arrival from places like Gujarat is expected in mid-December,” says Hubballi Onion and Potato Traders’ Association president Saleem Byahatti.
Horticulture Department Deputy Director Kashinath Bhadrannavar informed that onion was sown on nearly 20,000 hectares of land in Dharwad district this time, and the crop loss was on more than 4,800 hectares of land.
“Incessant rains also brought diseases which resulted in less yield. Heavy rains in October during the harvest time severely affected the quality of onion too. Therefore, both the yield and the quality of onion are hit this time,” he added.