Onion is making homemakers teary eyed yet again. After a brief thaw, the price has spiralled to over Rs. 60 a kg for a good quality produce in the retail market in the city.
On Tuesday, the price in Bangalore ranged between Rs. 30 and over Rs. 60 a kg, depending on quality. While the price for a good quality onion had hovered around Rs. 70 a kg early September, it had come down to less than Rs. 50 towards the end of September.
With onion price in Delhi making headlines after it inched closer to the Rs. 100-mark, traders here are attributing this the nationwide increase in the price due to shortage and also poor quality. Demand from north and eastern States for Karnataka onions has also pulled up the price here, traders say.
In Bangalore, the wholesale price of good quality onion sourced from Chitradurga area is hovering around Rs. 50 a kg at the Agriculture Produce Marketing Committee (APMC) at Yeshwantpur, while the retail price is between Rs. 60 and Rs. 70 a kg.
The wholesale price of medium quality onion and small-sized onion called as gulti in market parlance is about Rs. 40 and Rs. 20 a kg respectively. Commission, cess, transport and porters’ cost besides the retail margins push up the price by the time it reaches the consumers, traders said.
S. Balakrishna, vice-president of Bangalore Potato and Onion Merchants Association, said that the price has moved up here because of high demand from neighbouring States as well as demand for onion from some northern and eastern States which are facing shortage. “Normally the price of onion in October will be between Rs. 25 and Rs. 30, but this time, the price increased due to crop failure in major onion-growing States.”
Traders from other States are camping here to buy onions and transport them to their regions, Mr. Balakrishna said and added that a good crop could have brought down the price to less than Rs. 20 a kg.
“The price started moving upwards after Dasara since onion from Nasik/ Pune region is of poor quality. This high price is expected to remain till midNovember when quality onions are expected,” Karisiddappa of Sri Jenukal Siddeshwara Traders said.