In the wake of a fall in prices in turn triggered by a bumper output, the Centre has directed the National Agricultural Cooperative Marketing Federation of India Ltd (Nafed) to procure Kharif onion in Gujarat. The intervention is aimed at giving “immediate relief” to the farmers and providing “stability to the onion market” in the state.
In a statement, the Union Ministry of Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution noted: “Taking stock of the situation due to depressed prices of onion in late Kharif season in the state, the Department of Consumer Affairs has directed NAFED to start procurement of onion from three major markets in Gujarat. NAFED will start onion procurement from 09.03.23 in Bhavnagar (Mahua), Gondal and Porbandar”.
The statement added that the intervention had been planned by Govt of India in order to give immediate relief to the farmers from the plunging prices of onions in the state. “Farmers are requested to bring their good quality and dried stock to the procurement centres to avail of the better rate at these centres. Payments to the farmers will be done online,” the brief read.
More centres will be opened if the need arises. On Tuesday, the Gujarat Government announced a Rs 330 crore assistance package for onion and potato farmers struggling to sell their produce due to an excess in the market. The assistance also included a transport subsidy to farmers who were willing to sell their produce outside the state or prefer to export them.