Coriander at Rs 118 per kg as rains ruin crop

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KOCHI: Coriander has become dearer with prices increasing nearly 50 per cent compared to a year ago, thanks to untimely rains in Rajasthan, the largest producer of the spice, pest attack and low carryover stock.

The output from other major producing areas like Gujarat has been good and hence the overall production has not been affected.While the spot price of coriander is ruling around Rs 118, the June futures for ‘delivery in NCDEX touched Rs 130 per kg on Tuesday.’ The untimely rain in Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh has spoiled the crop.

“According to market sources, the damage due to rain is around 30 per cent while the loss on account of disease and pests is about 10 per cent. Thus 40 per cent of the crop have been damaged in the current season,” said Vishidha Vijayakumar, research analyst of Geofin Comtrade.

However, the higher availability from other sources may limit further rise in prices. The current year production estimated at 3,80,000 tonne is 3 per cent higher compared to last three years’ average production.The forecast of below normal southwest monsoon rains and the probability of El Nino developing may weigh on market sentiments, Vijayakumar added.

With prices escalating, the export has been hit, though it accounts for only a small part of the total output, which is mostly consumed locally. The exporters will now have to buy at a higher price from the domestic market. “The price offered by India has more than doubled from $1000 a tonne to $2100 making exports uncompetitive,” said P C K Maheswaran, partner of P C Kannan & Co, a major exporter. According to him the carryover stock from last year has been as low as 25,000 tonne compared with 1.6 lakh tonnes a year ago, a factor which has contributed to the price rise. The coriander futures prices in NCDEX hit the Rs 100 per kg mark in April and have steadily risen since then. To check volatility in the price, NCDEX imposed an additional margin of 5 per cent for trading from June 1.

– India Times

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