The dependency of Goa on the neighbouring states for all the essential commodities makes it vulnerable to the freezes price rises and once again the onion prices in the state have skyrocketed with vendors selling the onion at Rs 60 per kg and the traders expecting rates to increase more in the coming weeks due to the unseasonal showers in the past week.
Traders claim that onion prices have been affected due to the rains in Goa as well as in neighbouring states from which onions are brought to the state. While most of the onions available at the horticulture outlets come from Maharashtra, the rest of the vendors in Goa mainly source theirs from Belagavi.
“The onions that are loaded for transportation from Belagavi to Goa are usually in good shape, since we take care before sending the supply to traders in Goa. However, it has been raining heavily in the ghat section resulting in water seepage during transportation. Some of the onions get damp,” said vegetable supplier from Belagavi, Ramesh Pawale.
While there is a visible scarcity of onion supply to the state due to rain, most of the onion bulks that manage to get to Goa also get spoiled and damped during transportation.
“Nearly 20% of the crop that has arrived in the market is already spoiled. While it may have stopped raining in Goa, if it continues to rain in the neighbouring states or even en route, there may be a shortage in good quality onions very soon,” vegetable seller, Alladin Shaikh said.
While the Goan market vendors are suffering due to irrational rains and incurring losses, the government-run horticulture outlets have not experienced much loss this season.
“We procure onions from Nagpur and Solapur where there has not been much impact of the rain. The quality of the onions procured from these areas is not affected during transportation either,” managing director of the Goa State Horticulture Corporation Ltd (GSHCL), Sandeep Faldesai, said.
During the last few months of 2020 also the state had seen a similar hike in onion prices due to heavy rainfall causing massive destruction of crops in neighbouring states. At that time the situation was also compounded by the farmers’ strike in Karnataka which had a huge effect on both the state’s retail market, and the Goa State Horticulture Corporation Ltd outlets.