Gujarat APMCs, textile markets return to normalcy after transport strike

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Agriculture produce market committees (APMCs) in Gujarat are now returning to normalcy after the recently ended week-long transport strike had left the markets crippled. APMCs, especially those dealing with commodities produced largely in the state, are witnessing a surge in arrivals, thereby causing minor logistic hiccups in the interim. 

"Arrivals and despatches had come to a standstill during the strike. However, while buyers from within and outside the state are getting back to normal, arrivals at the markets have surged by at least 50 per cent over and above the normal. While logistically we are finding it tough to manage for now, once the despatches, too, gain momentum, things should ease up," said Atul Kamani, president of Commission Agents' Association at Rajkot APMC, which falls under the Saurashtra region of Gujarat.

The region had seen an impact on arrivals of cotton, groundnut and pulses while the Central and South Gujarat regions were reeling under fallen arrivals of fruits and vegetables.

According to Kanani, as against normal arrivals worth Rs 70-80 million per day at the Rajkot APMC, post-strike arrivals have risen to over Rs 110-120 million. 

However, the Unjha APMC has been witnessing a steady flow of produce arrivals ever since the strike ended. "Arrivals and despatches have resumed but in an equal flow, which has not disrupted the storage and other logistics for the market. Also, prices have remained stable for now despite the rise in arrivals," said Vijay Joshi, president of the Unjha Commodity Association.

During the recent transport strike, while the Rajkot APMC had seen a loss of Rs 400-500 million in terms of fall in daily volumes, the Unjha APMC had seen a loss of Rs 800 million.    

According to Joshi, Gujarat is known for its cumin seed exports, which go up to 150,000 tonnes per annum or 12,500 tonnes per month. However, the same was impacted during the strike, with the market unable to trade in fennel seeds, psyllium seeds and sesame seeds.    

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