Potato prices to stay firm due to bulk buying, low production

Lavern Vogel

Potato costs, which have amplified by practically forty five for each cent in the previous fortnight, are probable to stay firm likely forward, on the back of an estimated drop in generation and significant-scale stocking by people in West Bengal. Charges usually witness a softening craze at the time of […]

Potato costs, which have amplified by practically forty five for each cent in the previous fortnight, are probable to stay firm likely forward, on the back of an estimated drop in generation and significant-scale stocking by people in West Bengal.

Charges usually witness a softening craze at the time of harvesting, which normally will get accomplished by March-conclude. The arrival of the new crop brings down costs. Nevertheless, this calendar year has been distinctive.

The wholesale cost of potato (Jyoti wide variety) is currently ruling at all around ₹1,600 a quintal, almost forty five for each cent bigger than ₹1,one hundred a quintal claimed in the 2nd week of March. Retail costs are also ruling firm, with Jyoti fetching near to ₹20-22 a kg (₹16-eighteen a kg in early March) and the much better high quality Chandramukhi potato earning ₹25-26 a kg (₹22 a kg).

Small generation

Apart from the recent spurt in acquiring, estimated reduce generation in Uttar Pradesh and Punjab this calendar year has also led to a bigger need for potatoes in Bengal.

“The moment the lockdown was announced, individuals acquired potato in bulk quantity and stored it as there was fear that they could not get their supplies later on. This despatched the costs zooming higher. Potatoes from our Point out have also been likely into Bihar and Jharkhand, as generation in Uttar Pradesh is also estimated to be reduce this calendar year. This has pushed up our costs,” claimed a potato trader.

Charges are probable to stabilise to all around ₹1,three hundred-one,five hundred a quintal in April in Could once more, there is predicted to be a marginal enhance at the time the potatoes held in chilly storage commence arriving into the sector, sources claimed.

Delayed harvesting

Potato harvesting in West Bengal, which is usually total by the third week of March, is continue to lagging by all around 5-eight for each cent. Loading of potatoes into chilly storage, which is usually total by March-conclude, is also down by all around ten for each cent so considerably this calendar year, on account of labour scarcity in the wake of the recent coronavirus outbreak.

Harvesting of potatoes in West Bengal was by now delayed by a lot more than a fortnight this calendar year on account of premature rains. Sowing of the early wide variety — Pokhraj — which usually begins as early as conclude-October and the later on wide variety — Jyoti — which begins all around the 2nd week of November, was delayed next premature rains. Hence harvesting, which usually start out by December 20, could only commence from January 7 this calendar year.

Delayed sowing and harvesting also impacted the generation of the tuber in Bengal. The Point out, which produces near to 110-one hundred fifteen lakh tonnes of the tuber every calendar year, is estimated to make near to just ninety lakh tonnes this calendar year. This is even reduce than previous year’s generation of ninety two lakh tonnes.

According to Patit Pavan De, member, West Bengal Cold Storage Association, in excess of 5 for each cent of crop is yet to be harvested, mainly in the districts of Midnapore and Bankura. Potato cultivation in Bengal is spread in excess of near to 4.six lakh hectares of land. Hooghly, Burdwan, Bankura, East Midnapore and West Midnapore are vital developing districts.

“Harvesting is continue to continuing in the districts of Midnapore and Bankura. Loading in chilly storages is all around seventy five-80 for each cent this calendar year, as compared to 88-ninety for each cent similar period of time previous calendar year. When this lockdown was announced we were being at the peak of loading, there were being some initial labour issues and this delayed the loading at some of the chilly storage,” De advised BusinessLine.

There are all around four hundred chilly storages in Bengal, which are capable of storing near to 70 lakh tonnes of potatoes.

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