Onion prices stay strong before monsoon onions flood market

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Onions are seen prepared to send them to different warehouses.

Prior to the harvest of monsoon onions, the prices of onions continue an upward spiral in domestic markets. Like an incident in 2009, the prices of onions spiked in early September 2022. Three months remain for onions to enter the market. The price hit a new record of K3,850 per viss (a viss equals 1.6 kilogrammes), Yangon traders said.
Meanwhile, the consumers have to buy the onions at over K4,000 per viss in the retail market, Ma Thin Thin, a housewife from Mayangon Township, told the Global New Light of Myanmar (GNLM).
Traders gave reasons for the price hike due to the onion market collapse in 2020 and 2021 with the onion price of below K1,000 and the low inventory. The local onion prices are higher than the ones in external markets.
Myanmar has been conveying onions to Vietnam through Thailand’s border area, resulting in a price rise on low inventory, market observers pointed out.
As a result of this, the prices are likely to remain on upward trends before the harvest of monsoon onions. Traders from other regions and states speculated on the possible onion price rise that it will go higher than the current price of K3,850 per viss, said Ko Aung, a buyer from Bayintnaung Wholesale Market relayed this message.
Onion traders who kept the stocks in their hands in 2020 and 2021 suffered losses when the price plunged into K1,000 per viss. Furthermore, winter onion prices plummeted in those years compared to the prices of the previous years. It is said that the growers did not reap any profit and some growers faced extreme losses.
The onion prices touched the highest in September 2019 and 2022. Newly harvested onions were priced at approximately K800 per viss in summer in those two years when the traders stockpiled them in the warehouse, the market data showed.
The traders who keep the stocks in their hands elaborated on the potential price hike before the new harvest season owing to the low stocks.
Consequently, the consumers are expecting a fair market price in the coming months amid the inflation pressure.
Onion export should have been stopped when onion imports from foreign markets were not wanted. If onion exports do not cease for profits, the consumers are calling for the fair market competition of onions like the free market of locally produced onion and potato against the imported ones in Yangon markets.
A market observer told the GNLM that the interest of those stakeholders involved in the onion supply chain should not pose a burden on the consumers with the rocketing price. — TWA/GNLM

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