The cardamom market continued to witness a declining trend last week on slack demand at auctions held in Kerala and Tamil Nadu.

Buyers were seen unenthusiastic giving the impression that the upcountry markets are holding good stocks and fresh buying could be expected only after their liquidation. At the same time, export buying has also been negligible with around 10 tonnes last week, market sources told Business Line.

Banning of “pan masala” is pointed out as a reason for the fall in offtake of inferior grade cardamom estimated at around 2,000 tonnes every year, the trade said.

“The trade pointed out that because of the super bumper crop last season about 50 per cent of the material coming to the market is of the previous crop. The capsules coming from the current picking are of small size. Arrival of 8mm bold is negligible,” P.C. Punnoose, General Manager, CPMC, said.

The individual auction average has dropped to around Rs 740 a kg yesterday from Rs 757 a kg the previous Sunday.

Officially, the new cardamom season has begun from Aug 1, 2012. Thus, total arrivals during the current season from Aug 1-19, was at 963 tonnes and that in the corresponding period previous season stood at 985 tonnes.

Sales were at 897 tonnes and 937 tonnes respectively in Aug 1-19 and the same period last year.

Arrivals at the Sunday auction stood at around 65 tonnes as against 56 tonnes arrived on the previous Sunday and the entire quantity was sold out, Punnoose said.

Maximum price yesterday was at Rs 1,111 a kg and the minimum was Rs 347 a kg. The individual auction average declined to Rs 743.41 from Rs 757 a kg the previous Sunday, he said.

Weighted average price as on Aug 19 was at Rs 812 a kg (Rs 619).

Official prices of graded varieties (Rs/kg): AGEB 1,050- 1,100 ; AGB 800-820; AGS 790- 810 and AGS 1: 750-780.

(This article was published on August 20, 2012)
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