In the spotlight: India

India has been in the news for years due to its impact on the world market. The Indian Government has imposed an export ban on onions starting on 14 September. Consumer prices were rising sharply in the Indian market. Therefore, the ban was immediately implemented to keep onions affordable for the local population.

Onions are an essential ingredient in Indian cuisine, which is why the government does not allow consumer prices to go up too much. This year is the second time that India has imposed an export ban. The first ban was implemented due to heavy rains that resulted in disappointing yields. India produces about 22 million tonnes of onions annually but consumes about 15 million tonnes. The rest is exported to surrounding countries.

There are three harvest periods in India:

– Kharif – harvested in October-December

– late Kharif – harvested in October-December

– Rabi – harvested in March-May. The Rabi is the most important harvest, accounting for 70% of total production, and is also for storage.

Neighbouring countries Bangladesh, Malaysia and Sri Lanka are the largest buyers of Indian onions and therefore feel the effects of an export ban directly, which represents excellent opportunities for Dutch onions.