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Tender for importing onions floated

October 23, 2013 14:30 IST

OnionsAfter onions touched an all time high of Rs 90 per kg, co-operative major Nafed on Wednesday floated tender for import of the bulb from Pakistan, Iran, China and Egypt.

National Agricultural Cooperative Marketing Federation of India has floated tender after kitchen staple prices touched Rs 90 even though wholesale rates were much less at Rs 50-60 a kg.

The previous record high of retail prices was in 2010 when it touched Rs 85 per kg.

"NAFED is interested in importing onions of Pakistan, Iran, China and Egypt origin to be delivered at NAFED warehouse at Lawrence Road, New Delhi," the co-operative major said in the tender.

According to a senior official of NAFED, onions from Pakistan, Iran and China would cost around $200-$250 per tonne, while those from Egypt is likely at $350 per tonne.

Whereas India has fixed minimum export price of onions at $900 per tonne to deter outbound shipments.

In the tender, Nafed has sought ‘fresh quality big onions, red/pink in colour, size above 45mm, with white flesh, well dried, free from mechanically damaged, bulbs double, semi-matured, sprouted, soft, mushy, wet bulbs and completely free from fungus infestation and insect mould attack."

It also said a crop certificate issued by the competent authority stating that the onion crop is of new crop of 2013, is required.

On September 2 also NAFED had floated a tender for import of Onions.

However, NAFED reserves the right to accept or reject any or all offer in part or full without assigning any reason thereof, says the tender.

Meanwhile, concerned over price spike, the Centre asked states to take firm action against hoarders to boost domestic supplies as prices have been high for the last three months.

After discussing the issue with Agriculture Minister Sharad Pawar, Food Minister K V Thomas had said there is no plan to ban exports.

A senior government official, however, said that the Centre is also considering banning overseas shipments.

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