By Sandip Das
The Food Corporation of India (FCI) on Wednesday received bids for 89,000 tonne of wheat from bulk buyers like flour millers in its first electronic auction in the current year under the open market sale scheme (OMSS).
The corporation had offered 0.4 million tonne (MT) of wheat in the first tender. Around 900 purchasers of wheat participated in the e-auction.
Sources told FE that the average bid for the fair and average quality of wheat was Rs 2,153/quintal which is just above the minimum support price of Rs 2,150/quintal for the current season.
Under the OMSS, the government has decided to offload 1.5 MT of wheat from the central pool to flour millers, private traders, bulk buyers and manufacturers of wheat products till March 2024 to check prices.
Periodicity of the e-auction is yet to be fixed by the food ministry.
As per earlier policy, FCI had been selling surplus wheat to bulk buyers such as flour millers and food companies during the lean season (January-March).
The government aims at boosting supplies and moderate the prices at regular intervals through carrying out OMSS.
Retail wheat prices rose by 12.65% in May, against 15.46% in the previous month.
FCI sold 3.37 MT of wheat to private bulk buyers such as flour millers and food companies during February 1-March 15, 2023 through weekly auctions.
At present, FCI has wheat stock of 31.1 MT. As per the official assessment, the corporation has around 8.7 MT of surplus wheat at its disposal after meeting the requirement under the National Food Security Act and buffer norm in the current year.
This article has been republished from The Financial Express