With the COVID-19 Novel Corona Virus Pandemic raging on one side, after a spate of nation-wide lockdowns, India has just now begun returning to a semblance of normalcy! This too, is not because the Pandemic has subsided but more because the economy was beginning to get crippled. However, it looks like farmers will not be able to revel in the joy of the lockdown rules being relaxed! Torrential rains in the Maharashtra, Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh and Gujarat belt, which is considered to be India's maximum onion growing region, has resulted in the crops being destroyed. However, just as the rates were beginning to rise and the farmers were starting to become happy, the Indian Government has taken a stern decision!

The Central Government's Department of Commerce has now banned with immediate effect, the export of all types of onions! The average trade price of the vegetable in the country's largest onion market in Maharashtra's Lasalgaon crossed Rs. 30/Kg, which is more than double of its price in March. A statement from the Directorate General of Foreign Trade says, "The export of all varities of onion... is prohibited with immediate effect." This ban also applies to the Bangalore Rose Onions and Krishnapuram Onions, which were free for export, till now. The high intensity rains in August are said to be the main reason behind this flash decision by the Indian government. These rains caused the destuction of almost market-ready onion crops in Karnataka, which were ready to hit the market in September. 

The rains have caused a disruption in regular supply of the onion produce and only Maharashtra is said to have stocked up on their March-April produce. Reports state that this disruption is set to continue till the next harvest from Maharashtra hits the markets in early November. Indian Onions are in regular year-round demand in countries like the Gulf, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh, which are regular importers. However, now the demand has risen in the Gulf as well as in Sri Lanka as the crops in the island nation of Sri Lanka were also destroyed due to heavy rains. This blanket ban on Onion export is expected to bring down the prices of the bulb sharply but traders state that the prices would begin rising again, as the supply is stressed. Stay tuned for updates...