Agri Business

Cardamom: Slow down in buying makes market bearish

G. K. Nair Kochi | Updated on March 22, 2011

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Cardamom prices were nearly steady on limited buying at the auctions held in Kerala and Tamil Nadu, due to concern over the recent political developments in some of the Arab nations that are major markets for small cardamom.

Exporters were not active as their overseas clients slowed down buying because of fear of uncertainties following political crisis in the Gulf, North Africa and West Asia region, trade sources said. Besides, they are also on a wait and watch mode, hoping the prices might decline further.

However, huge domestic market would keep the prices steady to firm as the demand may have an edge over current supply, trade sources claimed.

Added to this, the cloudy weather in the growing regions has also created bearish sentiments in the market, Mr P. C. Punnoose, General Manager, CPMC, told Business Line.

Upcountry markets

All upcountry markets bought limited quantities so as to cater to the immediate requirements. The sellers are ready to climb down to Rs 1,000 a kg, given the bearish scenario prevailing in the market.

In the domestic market also “the fever from scams”is said to have affected the market negatively as investors have slowed down buying, dealers claimed.

At the same time, some felt that all these bearish propaganda might be aimed at pulling the prices down so as to enable them to cover cheap.

Despite these sentiments arrivals at the KCPMC auction on Sunday declined to 52.6 tonnes from around 57 tonnes in the previous auction and almost the entire quantity was sold, Mr Punnoose said

The maximum price increased to Rs 1,364 a kg from Rs 1,297.50 a kg last Sunday and the minimum was Rs 713 a kg. However, the auction average dropped to Rs 994.97 a kg from Rs 1,012.64 a kg from the previous Sunday.

At present, the seventh round of picking is underway and one more picking is expected before the end of the current season, he said.

Total arrivals

Total arrivals during the week increased to 240 tonnes from 232 tonnes the previous week, traders said.

Individual auction average last week was vacillating from Rs 990 and Rs 1,015 a kg.

Total arrivals during the current season from August 1 to March 20, 2011, stood at 7,812 tonnes. Of this 7,640 tonnes were sold.

Arrivals and sales in the same period of the previous season were 7,868 tonnes and 7,773 tonnes, respectively.

Weighted average price as on Mar 20, 2011 was Rs1,013 a kg, up from Rs 734 a kg same day last year.

Trade sources in Bodinayakannur told Business Line that the prices for 8 mm bold and graded varieties remained steady at previous weekend levels. 8mm bold with good colour was sold there at Rs 1,300-1,400 a kg, while good colour bulk fetched Rs 1,020-1,050 a kg, while slightly dim colour, Rs1,000-1,020 a kg.

Graded varieties

Prices for graded varieties for a kg in Kumily on Monday were: AGEB — Rs 1,220-1,230; AGB — Rs 1,100-1,150; AGS — Rs 1,060-1,070 and AGS1 — Rs 980-1,000. Prices according to trade sources in the open market in Bodinayakannur for a kg were: AGEB (7mm-8 mm) — Rs 1,200-1,210; AGB (6mm-7 mm) — Rs 1,050-1,100; AGS (5mm-6mm) — Rs 1,000-1,050 and AGS 1 — Rs 970-980.

The weather in the growing areas in Kerala's Idukki district remained cloudy with the potential for some showers. It is going to be good for the plants but may turn out to be bad for the market, trade sources said.

Published on March 22, 2011

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