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Onion prices at near 2-year highs on weak monsoon rains

Posted by Raj Kancham on

The price of onions, a staple that has sparked protests in the past and toppled state governments, has jumped to its highest in nearly two years and could fuel food inflation as scant rain delays plantings.

Persistently high food prices, mainly for onions used in everything from bhajis to biryanis, are politically sensitive in India as more than a quarter of its 1.25 billion people live on a maximum of 74 cents per day.

High food costs lifted June consumer inflation to an eight-month high, and a further rise could stop the central bank from cutting lending rates that are key to boosting growth.

At largest wholesale onion market of Lasalgaon in Maharashtra state, the average price has leaped 54 per cent in two weeks to 2,550 rupees ($40) per 100 kg, its highest since November 2013.

Prices could jump further as a mismatch between demand and supply is expected to worsen due to weak monsoon rains, ..

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