Even as the skyrocketing prices of onions pushed up the rate of growth of wholesale food inflation to 18.19 per cent in October according to official data released on Thursday, highly-placed sources in the government told The Hindu that the food-inflation tracking group is closely watching tomato prices.

“Spikes in the prices of perishable food items, especially vegetables, seem to occur sequentially in a pattern,” Dr. Saumitra Chaudhary, member of the Prime Minister’s Economic Advisory Council said. Overall wholesale price inflation grew during the month at 7 per cent – an eight-month high – compared with 6.46 per cent in September, the data revealed.

The rate of growth of inflation in the prices of onion slowed from the same in September but still remains sky-high at 278.21 per cent. Inflation rate of all vegetables grew at over 78 per cent while in proteins-rich food, it grew at 17.47 per cent against 13.37 per cent in September.

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