The drought in Maharashtra has hit the onion crop, with retail prices touching around Rs30 per kg in Mumbai.
The situation is likely to ease only after March when summer crop enters the market. "The drought has led to a 30% to 40% decline in production," said Nandakumar Daga, director of Nashik's Lasalgaon agriculture produce market committee, the largest market for onions in India.
He said the kharif and late kharif crops have been affected. He added that wholesale prices of late kharif onions, which are called 'rangda,' had risen from Rs1,600 to 1,800 last week to about Rs2,200 to Rs2,300 on Thursday and said any corrections could only be marginal. In Lasalgaon wholesale market, the good quality onion fetch the highest rate of Rs2,331 per quintal.
On Wednesday, the markets showed a rising trend with the minimum price of Rs1,500 per quintal, a maximum of Rs2,251 and an average price of Rs2,150 per quintal. On Thursday, while the minimum and average prices were stable, the good quality onion fetched the highest price of Rs2,251 per quintal. "Rates will be high till March and will reduce when the summer crop (unhali kanda) enters the market," said Changdeorao Holkar, director, National Agricultural Cooperative Marketing Federation of India.