Onion prices sharply increased in Nimroz
ZARANJ (Pajhwok): Onion prices have increased sharply in southwestern Nimroz province due to being dependent on imports from Tajikistan, residents say.
Earlier the province would produce vegetable enough for local consumption and would send surplus to other provinces, but now due to water scarcity, the province could not produce vegetable to be enough for domestic use.
According to shopkeepers, last month, the price of a kilo of onion was 10-13 afghanis but now had shot up and reached 40 afs.
Earlier, the crop would be brought from Herat and Farah provinces, but now the onions are being imported from Tajikistan, a shopkeeper, Jan Mohammad, told Pajhwok Afghan News, saying the Tajikistani onions are not as good as the domestic one.
There are no cold storages in many provinces of the country and traders could not store their produce for long a period of time, Mohammad said.
The onions of Afghanistan are marketed only for three months a year, leaving traders with no option but to import onions from neighbouring countries, he said.
A farmer in Khashrod district, Gul Ahmad, said onion production had declined in the province due to a lack of water and farmers could not grow them.
A landlord in Kang district, Khuda Raham, said he owned 1000 acres of land in the district which remained uncultivated over the past 10 years due to water shortage.
Onion currently produced in Nimroz could only fulfill the requirement of five percent people who remained relied on onions imported from other countries, Agriculture Director Mohammad Akbar Sharifi said.
“Three decades back when there was enough water, farmers in Nimroz would send surplus yield to other provinces and export to foreign countries,” he recalled.
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