KURNOOL: Onion farmers are disillusioned that they are failing to get a remunerative price for their produce at the Kurnool market yard despite the e-NAM online marketing facility. This is mainly because onion traders are refusing to use the electronic platform. They are instead pressuring farmers into making deals outside of it.
Farmers maintain that they are not getting a remunerative price as a quintal of onion is selling for less than Rs 400.
Kurnool market yard secretary B. Jayalakshmi, however, says that e-NAM trades of onions, which began 20 days ago, have been encouraging. “In the physical mode, Kurnool onion market rates had been at least Rs 200 - Rs 300 less than the prevailing prices in Hyderabad and Tadepalligudem markets. But after switching over to e-NAM, Kurnool farmers are getting the same rates that are being quoted at Hyderabad and Tadepalligudem,” she declared.
Jayalakshmi did concede that onion arrivals in Kurnool market yard have stopped since last five days, as traders are not willing to lift the stocks from the yard. Certain traders are going to farmers’ villages and buying onions directly. She clarified that whether electronic or physical market, 10-15 per cent onions are anyway rejected, as they do not pass the quality test. Farmers take such rejects to streets and sell them, though at lesser prices, she said.
The market yard secretary pointed out that the last traded price in e-NAM had been Rs 1,600 per quintal, with the model rate being Rs 1,000. However, the lowest quote had been Rs 500.
Ahmed, a trader, said computer trading will be beneficial for farmers only if they take quality products to the yard. But farmers tend to mix good onions with bad ones and bring them to the market. “When we grade the produce, naturally we will weed out unwanted onions,” he stated.
Onion is grown over about 10,000 hectares in Pathikonda and Adoni areas of the district.