Kerala

e-auction suspended again

The cardamom e-auction was suspended after it was opened for a day at the Spices Park at Puttady on Thursday following a gap of 68 days.

The main reason for the suspension of the e-auction was the restrictions on inter-State travel following COVID-19. Though the e-auction was relaunched, the agencies conducting the auction were reluctant to participate in it in the absence of buyers from Tamil Nadu.

K.S. Mathew, president, Vandanmedu Green Gold Cardamom Producer Company Ltd, which was scheduled to hold Monday’s auction told The Hindu that there was no point in conducting the auction without the buyers. He said the main buyers were from Tamil Nadu and in their absence there was no point in conducting the auction.

As far as cardamom was concerned, there was no actual buyer from the State, he said. The auction should benefit the farmers. The Spices Board of India relaunched the e-auction on alternative days with only a single agency conducting the auction.

Earlier, there were two agencies conducting the auction in a single day except on Sundays. The first auction, held after the long gap, was noted for steady fall in the prices. In addition to the Spices Park at Puttady, cardamom auction was also held at the e-auction centre under the board at Bodinayakanur in Tamil Nadu.

Sources at the e-auction centre said there were chances of starting the e-auction at Bodinayakanur from Wednesday after the Theni District Collector took a positive stand on re-launching the auction there. The agency scheduled to hold the auction might take a stand to participate in it.

Without the auction, there was no way of deciding the prices of cardamom. Since the new crop is set to arrive the markets by July/August, there is apprehension that the prices would considerably fall in the wake of a surplus arrival. Moreover, the farmers withheld a portion of the produce in the last season on the hope of a rise in prices prior to the lockdown.

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Printable version | Jul 10, 2020 12:17:41 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/kerala/e-auction-suspended-again/article31723451.ece

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