Mumbai: India’s pulse prices, which have jumped more than 15% in February, are likely to remain firm this year on a shortfall in winter output, and tracking the global market, traders and analysts said.
“There is a shortfall in chana output and it is pushing up prices of all pulses,” said Satish Mittal, an importer based in Jalgaon, Maharashtra.
The output of chana, or chickpea, the main winter pulse, is expected to fall by 7.90% to 5.83 million tonnes (mt), against 6.33mt a year earlier. In New Delhi, chana spot price had risen 22.56% in February. The benchmark April chana contract on the National Commodity and Derivatives Exchange Ltd had risen 22.74% in the same period.
The spot prices of red gram (tur), black gram (urad), lentils and yellow peas had also followed the rally in chana prices. “Farmers are holding stock while in the spot market there are many buyers. Stockists, big companies, traders are buying pulses, expecting a rise in prices,” said Ajay Khandelwal, a trader based in Indore.
He said late sowing of chana and scarce rainfall in Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan will lower the output.
“Imported pulses are more costly than domestic ones. There is little room for correction in prices,” Mittal said.