The Union Minister of State for Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution, Shri Ashwini Kumar Choubey in a written reply to a question in Rajya Sabha today informed that the Price Stabilization Fund (PSF) was set up to tackle price volatility in some agri-horticultural commodities such as onion and pulses, to protect the interests of consumers and promote direct purchase from farmers/farmers’ associations at farm gate/mandi. These commodities are procured and stored for regulated release to moderate the prices. Such market intervention by Government sends appropriate market signals and also deters speculative/hoarding activities.
During 2021-22, a total quantity of 2.08 LMT of Rabi-2021 onion was procured for calibrated and targeted releases to stabilize prices during the lean season. An amount of Rs.549.77 crore has been utilized for PSF Rabi onion operation during 2021-22. Procurement target of 2.50 LMT of Rabi-2022 onion has been fixed for 2022-23.
In respect of pulses buffer, during 2021-22 a total quantity of 8.79 Lakh Metric Ton (LMT) of pulses was procured for the buffer and 9.96 LMT was disposed through market releases, supplies to States/UTs for welfare schemes and also to the Army and Central Armed Police Forces. An amount was Rs.7,453.95 crore was utilized for the PSF operations during 2021-22. Procurement of pulses are ongoing to maintain the PSF buffer stock requirement during the year 2022-23.
During 2020-21 and 2021-22, a total of Rs.13,952.648 crore has been utilized for PSF operations. This includes Rs.13,325.578 crore for PSF pulses operations and Rs.627.17 crore for PSF onion operations.