board will also open a farmer procurement centre in Mumbai. One of these is already functioning in Goregaon and some seven to eight outlets are already directly selling vegetables, he said.
The state government has already decided to delist fruits and vegetables from the APMC Act and the issue is under consideration of the government. The government has issued licences to 20 private markets with an investment of Rs 30 crore, 61 licences for direct marketing and 54 single licences to traders.
Narendra Patil, general secretary, Maharashtra Rajya Mathadi Transport and Kamgar Union, said that his union and the APMCs had called off the decision to hold a meet on July 17 following an assurance by the agriculture minister that the market committees will continue to function normally. “The minister has made it clear that APMCs will continue to function until an alternative mechanism comes up. Where does the farmer sell his produce in the absence of the APMC? The minister has also assured that release of onions and potatoes from the list of commodities will be treated on a case-to-case basis such as stopping the trade of onions and potatoes in a phased manner in, say, Vashi market first or the Pune market later,” Patil explained.
“Moreover, 3-5 acres of land will be required to create a farmers’ market. Creating this infrastructure will require time,” Patil said. Patil pointed out that the farmers’ market that is currently functioning at Manjari in Pune has not been doing too well and some of the farmers now preferred to go to the APMC to sell their produce since they had a guarantee of payment and were not responsible in case stocks remained unsold.
Nanasaheb Patil, chairman, Lasalgaon APMC, said market committees in the state would continue to function normally after an assurance given by the minister that an alternative mechanism will require time. Sohanlal Bhandari, president, Onion Traders Association, Nashik, said a decision will be taken after the government resolution comes into effect.