KATHMANDU, Jan 30: Wholesale price of onion has increased by Rs 15 per kg over the past month due to short supply and soaring prices in India - the major supplier.
According to officials of Kalimati Fruits and Vegetables Market Development Board, onion was traded at Rs 45 per kg in the wholesale market on Wednesday.
Officials of the board said price of onion has increased due to price rise in India itself. “Onion has become dearer because of weak stock position in the country and over dependency on India,” Ramesh Dangol, planning officer at the board, told Republica. “We have to focus on India for most of the major vegetables and fruits due to lack of special programs to boost local production.”
Traders say this is the off-season for onion production India. Also stocks of onion in India have gone down, they said.
Traders source onions mostly from Indian states of Maharashtra, Bihar and Uttar Pradesh.
Officials say onion price increases between November and March. However, price cools down once fresh harvest starts to enter the market from April.
Wholesale price of onion has reached record high of Rs 95 per kg in November, 2010 after India imposed ban on onion exports to rein in price rise.
Meanwhile, prices of most of the vegetables have gone down over the past week. “Price of vegetables largely depends on supply situation. Vegetables have become cheaper by up to Rs 5 per kg due to interrupted supplies,” said Dangol.
Prices of seasonal vegetables like tomato, potato, radish, green peas, sword bean, bottle gourd and pumpkin among others have come down.
“There has been a healthy rise in production of vegetables in the capital as well as in major source districts. This has led to drop in prices,” Bharat Khatiwada, president of Kalimati Vegetable Wholesalers´ Association, said.
Traders in Kalimati market source vegetables from districts like Dhading, Kavre, Makwanpur, Chitwan, Parsa and Sarlahi, among others.