June 9: The government has projected an increase in potato and onion production this year. As the data collection of potato and onion production from across the country has reached the final stage, the production is expected to increase as compared to last year.
Due to the introduction of modern technology in agriculture and the increase in the number of people embracing agriculture and commercial farming, the production is expected to increase.
Compared to last year, the area for potato and onion farming as well as production have increased this year. According to the data provided by the National Center for Potato, Vegetable, and Spice Crops Development, it is estimated that 281,289 metric tons of additional potatoes will be produced in the current fiscal year than last year.
In the last fiscal year, 3.11 million metric tons of potatoes were produced in 193,996 hectares of land. According to the center, potato cultivation in the current fiscal year in 299,041 hectares of land is estimated to produce 3.39 million metric of potatoes.
Sandeep Subedi, Horticulture Development Officer at the Center, said that the data on potato and onion production has been collected from all over the country and the Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock Development is working on its final draft. He said that even though the available data is just an estimate, it won’t be much different from the actual production .
According to the data of the center, the production of onion is expected to increase by 3,864 metric tons in the current fiscal year as compared to last fiscal year. Last year, 291,538 metric tons of onion was cultivated in a total of 20,908 hectares of land. In the current fiscal year, 295,402 metric tons of onion has been produced in 20,424 hectares of land.
The production of potatoes and onions within Nepal is not sufficient to meet the domestic demand. Potatoes and onions worth more than Rs 11.5 billion are imported annually from countries including India. Altogether 50 percent of the total demand for potatoes is imported in Nepal while 95 percent of onions are imported.