Potato production in India in the current crop year is estimated to be 53.60 mt, down from 56.17 mt last year, according to the Ministry of Agriculture's first estimate of horticulture production. Production has been hampered in West Bengal, Punjab, and Haryana due to heavy rains in November and December of last year, just before sowing.
The crop has also been harmed by the countrywide heatwave that has been in effect since March. However, a section of the trade believes that states with a large number of potatoes stored in cold storage, such as Bihar, Gujarat, and Rajasthan, could ensure that prices do not skyrocket.
West Bengal, the second-largest producer, has seen a 23% decrease in output this year. The state's tuber production is down to around 8.5 million tonnes, compared to 11 million tonnes in 2021. "The crop is lower by 10 to 25% in Punjab and Haryana as a result of the impact of unseasonal rains," said Rajesh Goyal, Honorary Secretary of the Federation of Cold Storage Associations of India (FCSAI), which plays an important role in storing the spud.
The wholesale price of common variety potato (Jyoti variety) has increased by nearly 57% this year to Rs 22-24 a kg, up from Rs 14-16 a kg in the same period last year. Potato prices ruled at Rs 1,020 per quintal in the Agra agricultural produce marketing committee yard in Uttar Pradesh's largest producing state on Monday, up Rs 200 year on year.
Bengal saw a bumper crop last year, with a 16% increase in production compared to 9.5 mt in 2020, keeping prices relatively stable.
Source: Krishi Jagran