Turmeric prices have recently experienced a significant surge, almost doubling in the past three months. The cause of this price increase can be attributed to the adverse effects of unseasonal rains during the harvesting months of April-May, impacting production. Additionally, the delayed arrival of the monsoon further exacerbated the situation, leading to a sharp rise in prices.
Turmeric Prices Surge: A Result of Unseasonal Rains and Delayed Monsoon
Current mandi prices in various regions of India, including Maharashtra, Telangana, and Tamil Nadu, have soared to around Rs 14,000 per quintal, compared to Rs 7,000 per quintal in April. Turmeric traders have reported that unseasonal rains have caused high moisture in the crop, affecting about 7-8 lakh bags (50 kg each) or 35,000-40,000 tonnes of crop in Maharashtra. Moreover, farmers in Telangana have shifted to other crops due to low returns from turmeric in recent seasons, potentially leading to a decline in production this year.
Traders and Farmers Anticipate Higher Prices, Leading to Stockpiling
Both traders and farmers are holding stocks in anticipation of even higher prices in the future. It is estimated that there will be a 10-15% reduction in turmeric production this year compared to the previous year. The Spices Board of India has projected turmeric production at 1.16 million tonnes (MT) for the 2022-23 crop year, a 5% decline from the previous year. Moreover, the board has estimated a 10-20% decrease in turmeric sowing area in several states like Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, and Telangana.
In addition to the impact of unseasonal rains and delayed monsoon, higher exports and rising domestic consumption have also contributed to the tightening of domestic supplies. India holds the title of being the world’s largest producer, consumer, and exporter of turmeric, accounting for about 80% of the global production.