Agri Business

Price rise: Govt says ‘no’ to buying vegetables directly from farmers

| Updated on: Feb 22, 2011
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Asserting that the price rise of some vegetables like onion in the past one month was “temporary”, the Government today ruled out any possibility of purchasing and managing the perishable produce directly from farmers in line with other commodities like wheat and rice.

“There are certain limitations about perishable items...

The Government cannot purchase and manage vegetables and fruits. Steps are being taken to enhance the productivity of these items to keep their prices under check,” the Agriculture Minister, Mr Sharad Pawar, said in the Lok Sabha during the Question Hour.

He said price rise in the case of onion was temporary as it was due to damage to kharif onion crops as a result of untimely rains during November-December 2010 in Maharashtra, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan.

Mr Pawar also justified the steps to lift the ban on exports saying the farmers were losing heavily after the situation became normal and the prices crashed in most onion producing states.

Onion prices, which touched a peak of Rs 3,800 per quintal in December 2010, have now come down to as low of Rs 200 a quintal, forcing the Government to reverse certain decisions taken to control prices.

With a view to increasing the production and productivity of fruits, vegetables and other horticultural crops, the Government is implementing Horticulture Mission for North East and the Himalayan states, and National Horticulture Mission in the remaining states.

To a suggestion for setting up a corpus like ‘Price Stabilisation Fund’ to help farmers in the case of extreme volatile price situation like in onions, Mr Pawar replied in the negative but said the Government was aware of farmers’ plight and was taking steps accordingly.

Published on February 22, 2011

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