India Region

Onion Dynamics Prompt Talks with Farmers to Bolster Buffer Stock

12 June 2024, New Delhi: The government said there were “no serious concerns at the moment” over onion availability, but given the onion dynamics and past experience, the government has begun talks with farmer unions to increase the buffer limit.

Weekly stock reports are being monitored by top government officials to address concerns over availability and prices of essential commodities and curb food inflation. On June 8, it was reported that the Prime Minister’s Office is being sent a detailed weekly report of the current situation and analysis by top government offices involved in price monitoring to help formulate policies to tackle inflation.

According to sources, the government may soon increase imports of chana and tur dal to intervene at the right time to cool down prices. “The government is considering imports to support the sale of essential commodities at subsidised and subsidised rates,” they said. Several departments, including the Cabinet Secretariat, Ministry of Finance, Department of Food and Public Distribution, Department of Agriculture and Department of Consumer Affairs, are involved in the price monitoring process, sources said.

According to highly placed sources, the monitoring is done on a weekly basis on parameters such as prices and availability of pulses, essential commodities, onion, tomato, potato, edible oil etc. This is being done at 570 price monitoring centres across the country at wholesale and retail levels to assess the situation across India, sources said.

According to the latest price monitoring report of the government, the average prices of various commodities on June 7, 2024 were as follows:

CommodityAverage price as of 7 June 2024Average price as of 7 June 2023
Masoor Dal₹99/kg₹92/kg
Black Gram₹86/kg₹74/kg
Toor Dal₹159/kg₹124/kg
Urad Dal₹126/kg₹110/kg
Green Moong₹118/kg₹109/kg

Keeping this in mind, the government is expecting a good Kharif sowing of tur and urad and for this it is in talks with the states of Maharashtra and Karnataka and farmers’ unions of these states for better seed availability to ensure good yield, sources said. Regarding the availability of onion, government sources said there were “no serious concerns at the moment”, but given the past experience with regard to onion, the government has started talks with farmers’ unions to increase the buffer limit.

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