The cardamom market recovered at auctions in the last two days after easing during the middle of last week.

The individual auction average dropped to below Rs 800 a kg on Thursday and Friday but picked up on Saturday and Sunday to Rs 817 and Rs 826 a kg respectively, trade sources said.

Compared with the last season, prices are ruling at moderately higher levels and that is reflected on the faces of the growers, trade sources in Kumily said.

They attributed the marginal decline in prices last week to the presence of 30 per cent of last year’s crop in the arrivals which has created apprehensions among the buyers about the stock of old crop held by farmers.

Exporters were covering to meet their commitments and an estimated 30 tonnes of cardamom were bought by them.

Arrivals

Upcountry buyers were seen very active and buying. Arrivals last week declined at auctions, market sources said.

Demand has started picking up in north India for the festival season, winter and wedding season, they said.

However, a bullish sentiment continued to persist in the market given the unfavourable weather conditions prevailing in the growing areas so far this year. Added to this it has become almost certain that the crop is going to be around 50 per cent of the output last season.

The crop is so short that even during the current fourth round of picking this month, the yield in the estates is looking like that of March in normal conditions, they told Business Line.

Arrivals last week fell to around 480 tonnes from about 545 tonnes during the previous week and one-third of it consisted of cardamom from the last crop.

MAXIMUM PRICE

At the Sunday auction conducted by the KCPMC, total arrivals declined to 66.3 tonnes from 85.5 tonnes in the previous Sunday and the entire quantity was sold out.

The maximum price was at Rs 1,149 a kg and minimum was at Rs 606. Auction average price dropped to Rs 825.74 from Rs 854.29 the previous Sunday, P.C. Punnoose, General Manager, CPMC, told Business Line.

Total arrivals and sales during the current season from Aug 1 to Dec 9 were at 5,162 tonnes and 4,919 tonnes respectively.

Last year, from Dec 6 to 26 auctions were suspended following agitation/ protests across the border in Tamil Nadu against the Mullaperiyar Dam issue.

Hence, the total arrivals and sales related to the corresponding period were available up to Dec 5, 2011 and those were at 8,255 tonnes and 8,033 tonnes respectively.

The weighted average price as on Dec 9, 2012 stood at around Rs 764.97 as against 569.88 as on Dec 5, last year.

Prices of graded varieties were marginally down and that in Rs/kg were AGEB: 1,000-1,010; AGB: 800-810; AGS: 765-785; and AGS-1: 740-750.

(This article was published on December 10, 2012)
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