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India: Potato prices to stay firm due to ‘lockdown’ bulk buying, low production

Delayed harvesting means some crops are still being harvested in Bengal. Potato prices, which have increased by nearly 45 per cent in the last fortnight, are likely to remain firm going forward, on the back of an estimated drop in production and large-scale stocking by consumers in West Bengal, The Hindu’s BusinessLine reports.

Prices usually witness a softening trend at the time of harvesting, which typically gets completed by March-end. The arrival of the new crop brings down prices. However, this year has been different. The wholesale price of potato (Jyoti variety) is currently almost 45 per cent higher.

Apart from the recent spurt in buying, estimated lower production in Uttar Pradesh and Punjab this year has also led to a higher demand for potatoes in Bengal.

“The moment the lockdown was announced, people bought potato in bulk quantity and stored it as there was fear that they might not get their supplies later. This sent the prices zooming high. Potatoes from our State have also been going into Bihar and Jharkhand, as production in Uttar Pradesh is also estimated to be lower this year. This has pushed up our prices,” said a potato trader.

Read the full report in BusinessLine here

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Lukie Pieterse, Editor and Publisher of Potato News Today

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