The rise in onion prices during the festive season can be a cause of concern for the general public. Just before Diwali, onion prices have surged by over 57 percent. According to reports, the retail price of onions has reached up to 47 rupees per kilogram. In response to this, the central government has taken measures to control the prices.
Government to sell “buffer stock” To control onion prices, the Modi government has ordered the sale of onion “buffer stock” to consumers at a rate of 25 rupees per kilogram. According to the Ministry of Consumer Affairs data, at this time last year, onions were selling at 30 rupees per kilogram in the retail market. Currently, onion prices have reached up to 40 rupees per kilogram.
Sale of “buffer stock” in the market Rohit Kumar Singh, Secretary of Consumer Affairs, stated that the release of the onion buffer stock in the market began in August 2023. The government’s aim is to maintain sufficient availability of onions in the market and keep prices under control. From August 2023 until now, the central government has sold a total of 1.70 lakh metric tons of onion buffer stock in 22 states. Notably, the central government is selling the onion buffer stock through the National Agricultural Cooperative Marketing Federation of India (NAFED) and the National Cooperative Consumer’s Federation of India (NCCF).
Why have onion prices increased? According to experts, there are several reasons behind the increase in onion prices. One major factor is the delay in sowing the Kharif crop. The delay in crop sowing has affected the production, and this is reflected in both wholesale and retail onion prices. The Ministry of Consumer Affairs data suggests that for the financial year 2023-24, the central government plans to sell a total of 5 lakh metric tons of onion buffer stock through NAFED and NCCF in the market. Additionally, the government is planning to sell an extra 2 lakh metric tons of onions.