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India suffers tight supply of cardamom

INDIA’S forthcoming crop of green cardamom is likely to be further delayed due to lack of rains, putting an additional squeeze on existing tight supplies, industry sources have reported.

A team of experts from Indian company Emperor Akbar Green Cardamoms wrote in a June 16 market report that due to inadequate and delayed rainfall, India’s new crop was expected to be further delayed by more than 15 to 20 days. “Instead of earlier expectations of a good quality crop reaching by mid-August, we feel that good grades will now arrive in the markets only in the latter half of August or early September,” the firm stated.

Moreover, it noted that owing to the current lack of good quality stocks remaining from last year’s crop, the new crop material would command a premium by then.

In addition, this year, the domestic consumption in India has increased to about 13,500 to 14,000 tonnes. As a result of this, an expected shortfall on the new crop and delays to this crop, India’s export prospects on cardamom were likely to be lower this year.

Rainfall in the crucial months of June and July would play an important role in determining the total volume of production this year, the Emperor Akbar team noted.

The company also observed that speculators had played a key role in sustaining high prices in the last few months and would remain important over the coming weeks. “They have succeeded in boosting the prices by $4 to $5 per kg based on shortage in good quality stocks. The prices will remain highly volatile in the near future,” Emperor Akbar said.

As the current season drew to a close, the total quantity of stocks remaining, consisting mainly of lower sizes and rejections, was expected to be about 2,400 tonnes. Even this was likely to be consumed before the new crop started, the company warned.

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