Rising tomato, onion, milk prices to be first test for next govt, even as inflation not election issue

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Published: May 13, 2019 12:26:10 PM

Even though inflation may not have been a major issue these elections, it may become a serious concern for the next government.

CPI inflationThe prices of food items have generally remained muted under the Modi government’s rule.

Even though inflation may not have been a major issue these elections, it may become a serious concern for the next government. The drought in parts of western and southern India and harsher summer have propelled the prices of various farm commodities to rise in the last couple of months, an analysis by The Indian Express said, adding that it may thow fresh challenge to the upcoming government at the centre. The prices of food items have generally remained muted under the Modi government’s rule, with consumer food inflation remaining below retail inflation from September 2016 to March 2019.

The analysis further stated that jowar, bajra, kapas, tomato, onion and cotton are selling at higher rates now as against the year ago period. Even the rising ingredients of cattle feed have become expensive now compared to corresponding period of the last year. It  may soon translate into the higher milk prices for customers, R S Sodhi, Managing Director, Gujarat Co-operative Milk Marketing Federation told The Indian Express. Failing to get good prices for milk, the farmers have begun underfeeding the milch cattle which may affect milk supply at some time in the coming days, R G Chandramogan, managing director, Hatsun Agro Product Ltd, told The Indian Express. Even sugar prices may see a rise due to drought in Maharashtra, according to the analysis. The key driver has been the drought in Maharashtra.

Also read: Factory output fall may pull down GDP growth; here’s what economists suggest to counter slowdown blues

The latest Reuters poll said that retail inflation may have climbed to a six-month high in April on account of rising prices of food items. The polls of 40 economists, conducted May 3-9, revealed that the consumer price inflation (CPI) inflation may surge to 2.97 per cent last month from 2.86 per cent in March. The data is due later in the day today.

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