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Letter to BS: Govt squandered the opportunity to cash in on onions surge

It is not a one-off case. Every year, tonnes of food grain goes into the drain due to shoddy facilities at the godowns across the country

Business Standard 

India stares at drop in onion output in 2017-18

This refers to “The onion enigma” (October 8). It is not every other day that the government gets the opportunity to benefit farmers directly. A sudden surge in onion prices had given this golden opportunity to it but it has wasted the opportunity completely. At a time when farmers, in general, are under distress as they don’t find agriculture a viable profession for them, the government should have resisted the temptation and allowed farmers to earn some extra money. Not only has the government stopped export but it has ordered import of 2,000 tonne of onion while as much as 15,000 tonne is wasted in storage.

It is not a one-off case. Every year, tonnes of food grain goes into the drain due to shoddy facilities at the godowns across the country. As the writer has also mentioned it is between September and November that the government had to manage onion supply well but it did not. The government needs to learn its lessons fast and should address structural issues. It should also improve warehousing and cold storage facilities besides providing technological support to farmers, irrespective of size, so that they can not only earn good returns on their farm produce but also help facilitate exports.

Bal Govind, Noida


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First Published: Wed, October 09 2019. 21:40 IST
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