Driven by the pick-up in demand from stockists and ongoing political troubles in major jeera (cumin seed) producing countries namely Syria and Turkey, the price of the agricultural commodity hit a record Rs 21,000 per quintal levels at Gujarat’s Unjha market. Interestingly, this year most other agricultural commodities such as cotton, groundnut, potato or tobacco in Gujarat have observed low realisations. However, with jeera outperforming its peers, it stands as a bright bet for now. As per a report in The Indian Express titled “A lone happy story: Jeera provides some cheer to Gujarat farmers” farmers in the state are taking to jeera plantation in a big way. The report says, “The above spike in prices has led farmers in Gujarat to plant 3.48 lakh hectares (lh) under jeera in the current sowing season, which extends from November to early December. This area, which is subject to upward revision, is significantly more than the 2.79 lh of last year. All the major growing districts have recorded higher coverage: Patan (from 40,700 to 68,100 hectares), Banaskantha (from 64,900 to 67,800 hectares) and Ahmedabad (from 12,400 to 19,800 hectares) in north/central Gujarat; Porbandar (from 12,100 to 23,200 hectares), Rajkot (from 4,900 to 22,000 hectares) and Devbhumi Dwarka (from 4,800 to 20,400 hectares) in Saurashtra; and Kutch (from 23,200 to 29,600 hectares).”
The report further adds, “Jeera prices at Unjha — the APMC (agriculture produce market committee) mandi in Mehsana district, which sets the benchmark for this seed spice in other wholesale markets both within and outside Gujarat — crossed the Rs 20,000 per quintal barrier on November 24. By December 13, they had reached Rs 21,000 and have since hovered at those levels. Last year, at this time, jeera was being sold for Rs 18,000 per quintal, while ruling just over Rs 15,000 the year before.”
Jeera touched a high of Rs 21605 in futures trade today at the National Commodity and Derivatives Exchange (NCDEX). Jeera prices jumped by Rs 385 to Rs 21,700 per quintal in futures trade on Wednesday as speculators created fresh bets. In futures trading at the NCDEX, jeera for delivery in January rose by Rs 385, or 1.80 percent, to Rs 21,700 per quintal, with an open interest of 12,540 lots.