The Maharashtra government is all set to establish the state’s first ever special market for onion at Mandrup village in Solapur district in a bid to encourage
State cooperation minister Subhash Deshmukh said the government is in the process of preparing estimates for establishing the onion market which will come up in north of Solapur district soon. The government has also decided to set up a terminal market at Aurangabad.
According to the minister, Solapur is a growing onion belt and the government wishes to encourage onion cultivation in this region. The region trades some 45 lakh tonne of onion annually.
According to Dilip Mane, chairman, Solapur APMC, the region has emerged as a major onion trading hub and sometimes the arrivals even surpass those at Lasalgaon.
Traders from Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu and Karnataka come to this region as they save on logistics, he said. However, he expressed doubts on the viability of the project. “Solapur APMC is already trading in onion. A new commodities market could end up dividing trade here and the existing system could then be in jeopardy,” Mane said.
Jaydutt Holkar, chairman, Lasalgaon APMC, welcomed the move and but said that the government should focus on giving good rates to farmers instead of establishing new markets. Let the functioning of the existing markets improve, he said.
“I do not think there will be any impact on the operations of the Lasalgaon markets since it is the biggest in the country and daily arrivals exceed 25,000 quintals a day,” he said.