The Financial Express

Onion prices come down, thanks to ample supply, imports

| Updated: November 22, 2020 12:44:51

Lankabangla and Fianancial Express Lankabangla and Fianancial Express
Onion prices come down, thanks to ample supply, imports

Onion prices declined further in the city markets last week thanks to optimum import as well as local supply of the spice.

Big traders in Dhaka, Faridpur, Rajbari, Pabna and Natore are also releasing a large quantity of onion, as new early variety - 'Murikata' - will hit markets within a few days, which has helped easing down its prices, said traders.

Imported Burmese and local onion were sold at Tk 58-80 a kg based on quality, while other imported ones were selling at Tk 35-45 a kg, showing Tk 10-20 decline a kg in a week.

Narayan Chandra Saha, proprietor of Nabin Traders at Shyambazar, told the FE that prices started declining in Dhaka, Faridpur and Pabna regions, as new onion will hit markets within a few days.

He also said seasonal stockists are releasing onion in a large scale to avoid wastage and to hold market of new onion.

"Onion with leaves is now available in the market, while 'Murikata' will be available within a few days."

"We are selling local onion at Tk 62-65 a kg, while imported Burmese one at Tk 38-44 a kg."

Onions, imported from turkey, China and Egypt, were trading at Tk 24-34 a kg in Shyambazar, based on quality, he added.

Value chain expert Prof Golam Hafeez Kennedy said the government's onion import strategy was fruitful this year.

Private sector brought nearly 0.2 million tonnes of onion in last one and half months from various alternative sources after India imposed export ban on the spice in September.

Availability of imported and local onions as well as decline in demand amid the pandemic helped lower prices of the spice.

But market monitoring should be continued strictly until January to keep onion prices at a reasonable level, he opined.

Onion production reached all-time high of 1.9 million tonnes in the fiscal year (FY) 2019-20 against a demand for 2.4-2.6 million tonnes, according to the Bangladesh Bureau of Statistics (BBS).

The country annually imports 0.9-1.2 million tonnes of onion from India, Myanmar, Egypt, Turkey, China and Pakistan.

The Department of Agriculture Extension (DAE) said onion production target has been set at 2.4 million tonnes for FY 21.

Prices of most other essentials, including rice, edible oil, sugar, fish, potato, vegetables and pulses, remained static at their previous high.

Coarse rice varieties were sold at Tk 48-52 a kg, medium varieties at Tk 54-56 a kg, and finer quality at Tk 63-72 a kg on Thursday.

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