Hyderabad: Onion prices in the city have soared to Rs 45 a kg, forcing Hyderabadis to limit their purchases and hitting business. Traders say the high prices are the result of floods in Maharashtra, from where onions are sourced.
On the eve of Ganesh Chaturthi the markets were full but the onion vendors were tearful. Consumers backed off as soon as they heard the price. Demand is also low because many of the pious avoid foodstuff grown below the ground.
Telangana state gets its onions from Maharashtra, Karnataka and Madhya Pradesh. Local suppliers include Mahbub-nagar, Gadwal and Kurnool in Andhra Pradesh. Just a month back, onions were Rs 15-Rs 20 a kilo. The rains have changed all that.
Shoba Rani, an onion retailer in Secunderabad’s Monda Market said, “This is the scenario for the past month. People are buying less. We used to sell about 300 kgs of onions a day but now, only 150 kgs.”
Most onion sellers rely on Malakpet and Bowenpally morning markets for their daily supply. Customers are holding back hoping for prices to fall. Prices have even touched Rs 50 a kg in colonies.
U. Narayana, in onion business the past 16 years, says that he is getting Rs 35 a kilo as wholesale. Transportation charges bring it up another Rs 10 to Rs 45 for Grade A onions.
There reportedly was no significant rise in onion prices the last two years. Cheguri Venkata Ramana of the Hyderabad Onion Import Association said onion supply had reduced by 50 per cent.
“The supply from Gadwal also came down to 30 to 40 per cent of what it was earlier,” he said.
Weather permitting, prices might come down in one-and-a-half to two months, he added.