Everyone eyes on Petrol and Diesel Price Hike, Have you ever thought of Edible Oil

New Delhi: While common people struggle for finance due to continuous hike in petrol and diesel prices over the past few months, hike in edible oil prices have added ghee to fire.

The edible oil prices have been raising inflation for the past few months which people have missed while thinking about the price hike of Petrol and Diesel.

As per reports by The Print, the June retail inflation figure was at 6.26 per cent, which is above the Reserve Bank of India’s target 6 per cent. While fuel inflation was 12.68 per cent during the month, edible oil inflation was at 34.78 per cent.

All edible oil including the domestically consumed oil like mustard, groundnut, palm and the commercially used soybean or the sunflower oils have witnessed a sharp rise in price in the past six months.

The Government’s efforts to cut prices by reducing tax has gone in vain as it has not that much effect on edible oil prices.

According to the Department of Consumer Affairs, the inflation began with a rise in prices of imported edible oils such as the palm oil, which price has recorded the highest a decade. Prices of the soybean and sunflower oil followed closely and has climbed over Rs 150 per kg.

The prices of a variety of products derived from edible oil, primarily palm oil, such as commercial instant food items like chips and instant noodles, pizza dough, shaving cream, toothpaste, lotions, lipsticks and other personal care and cosmetics items have also risen in the same measure.

Another factor that aided rise in prices of the edible oil is the high demand of domestic consumption of mustard and groundnut oil during the Covid-19 lockdowns as home-cooked food saw higher utilisation of these oils.

While the retail prices of mustard have shot up from Rs 94 per liter in July 2020 to Rs 168 liter this July, the groundnut oil prices have also surged from Rs 105 per kg to Rs 178 per liter during the same period, reported The Print.

This steep rise in rates are unlikely to drop down soon as India meets more than half of domestic demand from imports.

In the international market, prices of edible oils have jumped sharply due to various factors.

Other factors include bulk buying of soybean by China, labour issues plaguing palm produce in Malaysia, adverse weather impact on palm and soya producing areas, along with high export duties on crude palm oil.

Government tries, but price remains unaffected    

However, the Indian government has tried to provide relief to consumers by allowing tax-reduction on edible oils.

In an order issued this month, the central government has issued an an order to reduce import duty on crude palm oil to 30.25 per cent by cutting 5 per cent basic duty. The import duty on refined palm oil was also reduced to 41.25 per cent from the earlier 49.5 per cent.

However, it did not affect the oil prices as they still have a high price. Even the prices of oils such as mustard and groundnut, which are mainly produced domestically, have soared to the level of their imported price and commercially-used counterparts.

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