Chilli farmers in Telangana are reaping high prices this season after a disastrous last season when they suffered due to the thrips virus last year.
“The prices are ruling high because of the fresh demand for the spice produce from China and Bangladesh. Because of the limited supply of new stocks, prices of many varieties are trading at a high price,” a Telangana government official said.
“Major importers are now waiting for the arrivals of the new crop due to which Teja variety is now trading in the range of $2,18-2,79 a kg, up by $0,06 per kg from last week,” he said.
The Teja variety is ruling at a high of $2,91 a kg at the Warangal market yard, one of the biggest chilli markets in the country, as against $2,12 a year ago.
The prices of other popular varieties, Wonder Hot and US-341, are quoted very high too. While the Wonder Hot variety is quoted at $4,62 a quintal (against $3,52 a year ago), US-341 is being bought at $3,16 ($2,61) a year ago.
Telangana is the top chilli-producing State in the country with a production of 7.19 million tonnes. It is grown on about 4 million acres. It accounts for 22 percent of the country’s chilli area and 38 percent of the production.
Trade sources said chilli prices were expected to rule firm, though below the peak seen last season, on stocks in cold storage being 90 percent lower this season.
Farmers say the rates have gone up in the last one week or so sharply. “About 80 per cent of the produce has been sold so far. The crop was hit by thrips attack again, causing heavy productivity losses. Against the normal output of 30 quintals an acre, we got only 5-10 kg,” B Rambabu, a chilli farmer.
With the production getting hit by thrips, the inflows have reduced significantly, triggering the price increase.
Source: The Hindu Business line