The problem of onion growers in Maharashtra does not seem to be diminishing. Onion is the second largest cash crop in the state after sugarcane. Farmers have hardly survived the effects of natural calamities, but the fall in prices has broken their backs. This year, farmers are forced to sell onions at Rs 300 to 400 per quintal.
A farmer living in Yevala taluka of Nashik, the country’s most famous onion producing region, was upset by the low price of onion and destroyed the crop by driving a tractor in the field. The farmer felt that when the price of onion was so intense, even the cost of taking the onion out of the area and bringing it home would not be able to meet, and he took the step of destroying the crop.
Ramdas Garuda, a farmer from Yevala taluka, had cultivated onions on one and a half acres of land. But the worry of falling prices and not being able to meet the cost of transportation bothered him. It was also difficult to meet the cost of taking the produce out of the field to the market. The government is not giving any help. In such a situation, it was better to destroy the crop.
How much was spent
Garuda said that I could not keep pace with the falling prices and rising wages. Four months of hard work and input cost from above. The cost came to Rs 2 lakh. But now onion is being sold for Rs 300 a kg, due to which all hopes have been dashed. Even the cost is not able to come out from the falling price. Therefore, he emptied it for another crop by driving a tractor in the field. Such a low price is rarely seen.
How much was the price before
The unseasonal rain hurt the onion crop in the Kharif season. After this, even when the Rabi season crop started coming, the farmers were hit by the weather. The farmers felt that when the Rabi season was at its peak, there would be a reasonable price, and they would compensate for the effect on production. But yes, it has been the opposite. According to the records of the mandis, on October 13, 2021, the maximum price of onion was Rs 4393 per quintal in Pimpalgaon Mandi of Nashik.
On the other hand, in Lasalgaon, Asia’s largest market, on October 2, 2021, the minimum price of onion was 1000 while the maximum was Rs 3101 per quintal. On the same day, the minimum rate in Pimpalgaon Mandi was 1500, while the maximum price was Rs 3753 per quintal. The farmers felt that similar conditions would prevail in the Rabi season. That’s why he sowed heavily. But when the crop came out, the prices fell face to face.
Why did the price drop so much
Agriculture sector experts say that Maharashtra produces about 40 per cent of the country’s onion. Out of which the highest, about 65 per cent occurs in the Rabi season. Farmers store only Rabi season onions. It has been told that this time due to the record arrivals in the mandis, the price of onion has come down so much. He is advising farmers to store onions. Experts are hopeful that the price will rise again; farmers should be patient.
At present, harvesting and sorting the Rabi season onions from the field. Those who do not have the facility to keep stock are selling the crop at throwaway prices; the rest of the farmers are focusing on storage in the hope of a reasonable price.