Ginger prices set to rise on lower yield from new crop

Written by RajeshRavi | Kochi | Updated: Aug 4 2012, 09:17am hrs
Ginger prices are on the rally due to lesser yield from the new crop and deficit rain in Karnataka. Most of the farmers had abandoned the crop when the price of ginger declined sharply and consequently the yield from the new crop is reported to be very low. Traders and farmers fear that the impact of the deficit rains in Karnataka would be disastrous for the ginger crop at least for the next three years.

Lower production in the current season would raise the price of seeds and make it unaffordable for small farmers and lead to less acreage in the coming years. The price is likely to move higher as the old stock diminishes and touches R50 per kg for vegetable ginger, KS Mohanan, a leading trader from Wayanad told FE.

Dry ginger is being sold at the terminal market of Kochi for R110 per kg, while vegetable ginger is quoting R30 per kg in Wayanad. Ginger market had touched a low of R7 per kg during last year due to good supply from Karnataka where farmers from Kerala leased land for cultivation. Crop failure in China due to erratic weather and other issues had increased the stake for Indian ginger in the past few years.

Good returns from ginger in the past few years due to robust demand prompted Kerala farmers to lease more land for ginger in Karnataka. Currently, Coorg in Karnataka is the happening place for ginger with land leases increasing substantially in Hasan district and its neighboring places.

India produces 2.75 lakh tonne of ginger per annum, almost a third of the worlds production of 8.35 lakh tonne. The major consuming nations are US, UK, Japan and Saudi Arabia. Indian is at a disadvantage compared to countries like China and others due to the low productivity.

Domestic consumption of ginger increases during the cold weather, a trader from the terminal market of Kochi said. Ramadan demand from West Asia is also good but Indian ginger is priced higher when compared with other sources, he added. During the last FY, India exported 22,000 tonne of ginger and during the month of April, India exported 2,500 tonne.