Odishatv Bureau

Bhubaneswar: Prices of potato is likely to touch Rs 30-40 per kg in coming three-four months following crop damage in different parts of the country, predicted Food and Civil Supplies Minister Surya Narayan Patro today.

This has forced Odisha government to step up measures to check any kind of abnormal price rise of the kitchen staple commodity well in advance.

“Within three-four months, the prices are expected be to rise to Rs 30-40/kg as a result of crop damage in other parts of the country. Therefore, we have decided to purchase potatoes worth Rs 28-30 crore from National Agricultural Cooperative Marketing Federation of India (NAFED) and keep adequate stock to meet such situation,” the Minister added.

He further informed the Centre has written to all the States saying that potato production might be hampered this year and the prices might go up in October-November.

“The State government has taken measures to safeguard the interest of consumers,” Patro added.

Meanwhile, consumers have already started to feel the pinch of spiralling prices of the tuber in the market.

In Cuttack, three kilos of tuber is being sold at Rs 45 as compared to Rs 10 per kilo few days back.

Similarly, in Aingania wholesale market of Bhubaneswar, the price is hovering at Rs 13-14 per kilo whereas consumers are purchasing at Rs 15 from retail markets.

" If price of potatoes goes up, definitely we will face difficulties,” said Bijaylaxmi a resident of Cuttack.

Expressing similar views, Sunita sahoo from Bhubaneswar said, “Earlier we used purchase potato for one week. But after the price rise, we have to be content with lesser quantity.”

Sources said the minister’s statement on possible potato price hike could trigger illegal hoarding of potato stock in different parts of the State.

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