City dwellers, who have been bearing the burden of astronomical rise in onion prices, can expect to get some respite from next week, as the fresh harvest of the vegetable from Nasik has started hitting the city markets since yesterday.

The onion traders of the city are anticipating lower prices from next week. Trucks carrying the fresh crop from Nasik and other parts of the country in the south and Rajasthan have already started reaching the city markets.

According to sources, more than 100 tonnes of onions from Nasik have reached the city markets since yesterday, while abundant quantities of the vegetable are expected to reach Kolkata in the next few days. “Around 500 tonnes of onions had been procured from Egypt this week,” an onion trader in Posta said.

“The Egyptian stock came as a blessing during the period of acute shortage of supply. The entire stock has already been sold and now we have started receiving the fresh variety from various parts of the country. The abundance of supply has also brought down the prices in the wholesale markets of Nasik. The cost of the varieties which were available for Rs 4,200 for 40kg has come down to Rs 3,500 or even 3000 for smaller ones of poor quality. “Ample supply is also available from other wholesale markets in the south and Rajasthan. A reduction of prices therefore can be expected from mid next week or so,” he added.

Considering the boost in supply, the traders are not now considering import of the vegetable from the countries of Iran and Afghanistan. Meanwhile, the restaurants and hotel owners of the city under the canopy of Hotel and Restaurant Association of Eastern India held a meeting earlier this week to decide upon the steps to be taken in the aftermath of the soaring onion prices. According to the members of the association, the restaurant and hotel owners have decided not to increase the rates of their food items during the festive season. The association members have decided to wait till 31 December and take a call on the issue thereafter.