Millet Price Rise Due To High Demand & Disrupted Supply

Millets are extremely nutritious food items and have recently gained huge popularity in different parts of the world. Speaking particularly about India, in the last few years, a lot of people have started leaning towards millet instead of staple grains like rice and wheat. However, this has led to an increase in the price of these superfoods.  

There has been a significant rise in the price of ragi, jowar, brown top, and other types of millet. They have increased by 40% to 100% in one year, as per the report from The Economic Times. The rise in the price can be credited to the International Year of Millets campaigns and the entry of multinational companies into this market segment. The higher demand along with uncertain weather conditions have been affecting supplies, which has resulted in a price rise. 

Motivated by the government’s emphasis, many companies have launched new products like millet-based pasta, noodles, snacks, and so on. You can also find millet in breakfast cereals and the traditional form of flour. These changes have been held responsible for an increase in the consumption of millets, as the ET report said, citing industry experts. 

Apart from this, millet-based startups have doubled their growth year-on-year and are struggling to source enough supplies of good-quality millets. These challenges are due to the unpredictable weather conditions in millet-growing regions and the low production of these superfoods as compared to other traditional food grains like rice and wheat.   

According to industry experts, drought in the jowar-growing areas of Maharashtra, Karnataka, and Telangana, as well as excessive rainfall in brown top crop areas in Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, and Kerala, are the main reasons for the drop in production of millets and a surge in their prices. The prices of top-quality millets, particularly jowar and ragi, have increased by 150% and 45%, respectively, which in turn is making them unaffordable to many consumers, an ET report said. 

“Prices of all the millets have increased abnormally," said Annapurna Kalluri, CEO of Sri Haritha Agro Food Products, which provides millet-based meals to government schools and manufactures value-added millet products for other brands. "Prices of millets see a jump of 15-20% every month and undergo a lot of fluctuations. The availability is also limited," she further highlighted.