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Coriander markets may find difficulty in moving upwards in coming weeks

Abhijeet Banerjee
Abhijeet Banerjee

Coriander or Dhaniyahas offered good returns for farmers since last two years. Prices overall are in upward trend since October 2018, when the NCDEX specified grades were trading at 6-year low of Rs 4300-4400 per quintal roughly. Major reasons attributing for lower prices in 2018 were enhanced supplies of coriander, from record production numbers during 2016-17 and 2017-18, in addition to rise in imports from Russia.

Reports of lower acreage following irregular monsoon rains and suppressed price levels since last two seasons persuadedfarmers to go for lesser sowing in the country. This supported prices 2018 October onwards. Cheapening offers in the country attracted stocking interest as well as purchases from overseas markets. These factors also contributed in keeping wholesale/retail prices of Coriander higher.At present prices for the same are trading between Rs.5900-6100/quintal in mandis of Gondal/Kota and Jaipur – nearly Rs.1500-1600/qtl above the 2018 lows.

Coriander acreage in 2019 was lower by almost 30-40 per cent due to deficient monsoon rainfall in Gujarat and most areas of Rajasthan, and farmers opting for other Rabi crops like wheat, Chana in Rabi season of 2018-19, hoping for better returns from these commodities. Also, higher prices in major coriander exporting nations during the second half of 2018 and improving demand for Indian coriander kept prices firm in marketing year of 2019. Prices started recovering after June 2020 when the corona problems started reducing and exports/domestic trades picking up. When compared with June prices, the coriander market had appreciated by roughly 600 Rs by end of September 2020.

Markets reversed the gains after September following reports of increase in planting area and slowing export demand. Prices have started gathering strength in last few weeks since lower levels could attract domestic buyers as well as exporters. However in coming weeks upside shall be capped due to the approaching new crop season in Gujarat and Rajasthan. Already arrivals from few regions of Gujarat have started. On the other hand the inventory of the old season stocks is lower. All in all, as long as arrivals are not intensifying, the market may not fall much from current levels – say not more than Rs.300-400/qtl in the major mandis in next 5-6 weeks at least. 

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