Onion farmers in Maharashtra will stage a protest next week if the state government does not increase the prices of the vegetable. Their threat comes in the wake of prices at Asia’s largest onion market crashing below production costs.
Farmers at Maharashtra’s Lasalgaon Mandi (wholesale market) in Nashik district stopped auctions and issued an eight-day ultimatum to the government. “If the prices are not increased, we will dump the onions next week outside the state Secretariat,” said Bharat Dighole, Maharashtra State Onion Grower’s Association.
The cost of onions at Lasalgaon Mandi reflects the price at all other Mandis across the country. Farmers at Lasalgaon are getting a meagre Rs 7-Rs 10 per kilogram (kg) on average. The cost to cultivate a kilogram of onions is Rs 22-Rs 25 on average.
Onion prices usually increase in November due to low availability as the last onion crop harvested in April gets over and the next crop still has some days to be harvested.
[ Rs 100 = €1.20 ]