Bhubaneswar: Odisha Food Supplies & Consumer Affairs Minister Ranendra Pratap Swain today said that the Central government should promote the cultivation of onions by incentivizing onion farmers and bring more areas under cultivation of the edible bulb.
The Minister pointed out that in the current year onion was cultivated in 26% less area as compared to previous years.
Citing fall in yield as one of the reasons for the present crisis in the supply of onions, the Minister said that areas which earlier used to produce 3 MT, now are producing a yield of 25-30 quintals.
Quoting statistics, Swain hit out at the Centre for importing merely one lakh MT of onions from Egypt or other countries when the daily requirement of the edible bulb in the country ranged from 12 lakh -13 lakh MT.
“It is a drop in the ocean. It’s not a permanent solution,” he quipped.
The Minister again quoting statistics reiterated that the situation with regard to the supply of onions and its price would ease with the arrival of new crop towards the end of this month and first week of next month (January).
“As you might have marked, the situation has improved in the last few days with the arrival of onion trucks which had gradually thinned to one truckload and to zero truckloads. With the arrival of the new crop the supply situation and prices will ease,” he further pointed out.
Notably, Swain a few days back termed the onion crisis in the country as a “national disaster”.