Onion export down by 7% during April-August in Maharashtra; India’s exports however increase

Maharashtra the leading onion exporter has witnessed a drop of 7 per cent in export during April-August of the current financial year, while the national export has increased by 5 per cent during the same period.

Despite good quality summer onion production in Maharashtra, factors like change of ports for shipment from Mumbai to other ports in Gujarat or Chennai led to decrease in export from Maharashtra.

Moreover, dependence of other states on Maharashtra for onion exports has also reduced. Most of the states are now buying onion seeds from Maharashtra and producing good quality onions in their own states.

According to Agriculture and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (APEDA), the country’s onion export during April-August period of current financial year stood at 8.31 lakh tonnes, fetching foreign currencies worth Rs 1,171.69 crore against 7.95 lakh tonnes during corresponding period in 2017-18, fetching Rs 1,910 core.

As per official data, there has been 40 per cent rise in onion production in states like Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh, which led to rise in onion export from these states and the country, leaving Maharashtra behind.

India is the world’s second-largest producer of onions, after China.

Dubai, Sharjah, Doha, Muscat, Bahrain, Saudi Arabia and Kuwait are eager to source the pungent bulb from India, Roy adds, with Europe and the US not far behind.

Demand for red onions is phenomenal. , especially. Red onions from India are imported all over the world since they are not grown in many places. Demand is high from Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Sri Lanka, Malaysia and Singapore. Though maximum orders are from the Gulf countries, white onion from Gujarat is a big draw with Europe and the US, given its low pungent quality.

Shekhar Ghosh is consulting editor, Indoasiancommodities.com. He has edited and written for publications like Business India, Business Standard, Business Today, Outlook and many other international publications. He can be reached at shekhar.ghosh@indoasiancommodities.in.

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