Odisha Govt To Construct Godowns In 5 Dists To Encourage Onion Farming

Bhubaneswar: With onion prices going up due to falling local production and over-dependence on import from other states, the Odisha government has decided to construct godowns in 5 districts to store the vegetable.

According to Dharitri Mishra, general manager, Odisha State Agricultural Marketing Board (OSAMB), the government proposes to construct 13 new onion godowns in Kalahandi, Bargarh, Nuapada, Angul and Boudh districts.

These godowns will be located at Koksara, Junagarh, Borguda, Barada, M Rampur, Bhawanipatna and Kesinga in Kalahandi district, Bhatli and Padampur in Bargarh, Komana in Nuapada and Luhamunda in Angul and two in Boudh.

The godowns, which will have storing capacity of around 6,000 tonne onions, will come up with a budget of Rs 7.51 crore, Mishra said. At present, the OSAMB has only two onion godowns in Angul and Bolangir districts of Odisha.

According to Agriculture department sources, the state produces 4 lakh tonne onions against the demand of 12 akh tonnes, meeting 33% of the needs. The rest amount is bought by traders from outside states including Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka and Maharashtra.

Stating that local onions have stopped coming to Bhubaneswar for the last 4 years, secretary of Aiginia Retail Traders’ Association Shakti Mishra said the Nasik farmers virtually control the prices of the vegetable in Odisha capital.

The sources the farmers are shying away from onion production due to lack of godown facilities as there are only  two onion godowns in Angul and Balangir districts. As a result, the traders remain at the mercy of outside states, they added.

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