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Government to buy 300,000 tonnes of onion in Rabi season: Piyush Goyal

Rabi onion crops harvested during April-June accounts for 65 per cent of India's onion production and meet the consumers' demand till the kharif crop is harvested in October-November

Union Minister Piyush Goyal

Union Minister Piyush Goyal

Press Trust of India Mumbai

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Union Minister Piyush Goyal on Thursday announced that the government agencies will buy 3 lakh tonnes of onion once the winter harvest starts coming in.
Goyal, who handles the Consumer Affairs, Food and Public distribution portfolio, said that last year, the overall buying of the rabi harvest stood at 2.5 lakh tonnes.
"I have already ordered an increased onion purchase from Rabi harvest from 2.5 lakh tonnes last year to 3 lakh tonnes this year to ensure that farmers get a fair price," Goyal told reporters here.
He added that the National Cooperative Consumers Federation and National Agricultural Cooperative Marketing Federation of India (Nafed) have also been instructed to pick up 'late kharif' harvest stocks, but are not finding the produce in the markets now.
Growers in Maharashtra have been protesting after a steep fall in onion prices over the last month. Marketplaces, including the largest one in Nashik district's Lasalgaon, have been shut down and onions have also been dumped by farmers.
Farmers claim they are getting very low rates for the harvest, which is a fraction of the input costs and have been demanding the state agencies to step in, given the wide-ranging stress.
They blame the monsoon season for lasting longer, higher prices commanded by 'late kharif' in the last two seasons, which led many to plant the particular variety with lower shelf life and impact on exports as major producers like Bangladesh have started growing their own onion.
Earlier this month, the Maharashtra government agreed to give a compensation of Rs 300 per quintal to onion farmers amid the crash of prices.
Rabi onion crops harvested during April-June accounts for 65 per cent of India's onion production and meet the consumers' demand till the kharif crop is harvested in October-November.
The overall onion production is estimated to have risen to 31.70 million tonnes in 2021-22 from 26.64 million tonnes in the previous year, and the Centre procured 2.50 lakh tonnes of it.

(Only the headline and picture of this report may have been reworked by the Business Standard staff; the rest of the content is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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First Published: Mar 30 2023 | 7:38 PM IST

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