Industry body appeals to members not to hoard vegetable oil

In view of the volatility in the international oil markets due to Ukraine-Russia war and the resulting uncertainty over imports, the Solvent Extractors Association of India on Tuesday appealed to its members to strictly adhere to stock limit prescribed under storage control order and also refrain from raising Maximum Retail Price (MRP) of edible oils.

The direction came in wake of the rising edible oil prices, including that of vegetable oil for the past few years.

“Our country is grappling with very high prices of edible oils and the situation has got further aggravated due to the ongoing Russia-Ukraine standoff. High edible oil inflation, even though it is largely an ‘Imported Phenomenon’ has unnerved policy makers. However, somehow, the officials feel the high prices may be contributed by hoarding of edible oils and oilseeds by traders, which we feel may not be the case,” Atul Chaturvedi, president of the Association said in the advisory to the members.

The advisory from the Association, a premier association of vegetable oil industry and trade, then said: “These are unusual times and we would advise our members to strictly adhere to the Stock Limits being prescribed under Storage Control Order and also refrain from raising Maximum Retail Price (MRP) upwards to avoid inconvenience. We would also request members to ensure the supply chain is maintained smoothly and consumers are not put to any difficulty.”

Starting April 1, the Centre has extended the stock limits imposed on edible oils and oilseeds up to December 31, 2022.

Domestic prices have been impacted by the high prices of edible oil in the international market and have a substantial impact on the domestic edible oil prices. Majority of India’s import of sunflower oil comes from Ukraine and has been impacted due to the war. The shortage in the global supply chain has had an impact on Indian markets too.

The stock limits for edible oils are 30 quintals for retail and 500 quintals for wholesale while the same for oilseeds are 100 quintals and 2,000 quintals, respectively. In both cases, the time for processors is 90 days of storage/production capacity.

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