India: Potato prices are getting more solid in Bengal, India
Potato prices in West Bengal have firmed up by nearly 9 per cent in the last two months, a development caused by a steady demand from neighbouring states.
The tuber is currently fetching around ₹500 per 100kgs (€6.35), excluding all costs, as against ₹460 per 100kgs (€5.84) about two months ago.
“The crop in Uttar Pradesh, which usually starts coming from September, does not look too good so far due to lack of favourable weather conditions. Bengal potatoes are finding good demand in Bihar, Jharkhand, Andhra Pradesh, Assam and Odisha,” Patit Pavan De, Past President of the West Bengal Cold Storage Association told BusinessLine.
Bengal produced around 9-9.5 mln tonnes of potato this year, as against around 10 mln tonnes in 2018. Close to 6.6 mln tonnes of potato were stored in the 400-odd cold storages spread across the State this year. Of this (6.6 mln tonnes), around 70 per cent belong to farmers.
Naturally, the firming up of prices would help farmers. A farmer typically spends around ₹500 to grow one quintal of potatoes. So with the current price increase he would be able to cover up the cost. The industry is expecting prices to firm up further after Durga Puja that is by the middle week of October, backed by demand from other States. This will help farmers to make some gains.