Govt. asks industry to pass on the benefit of decline in edible oil prices to consumers expeditiously
New Delhi, May 5, 2023
The decline in the price of edible oil should be passed on to consumers expeditiously, according to Department of Food and Public Distribution (DFPD) Secretary Sanjeev Chopra.
At a meeting with industry representatives here on Thursday, the Secretary noted that the international prices of imported edible oils were on a downward trend.
Representatives from the Solvent Extraction Association of India (SEAI) and the Indian Vegetable Oil Producers’ Association (IVPA) were at the meeting to discuss a reduction in the retail prices of cooking oils amid a fall in global prices.
The industry representatives informed that the global prices of different edible oils have fallen by USD 200-250 per tonne in the last two months, but it takes time to reflect in the retail markets and the retail prices are expected to come down shortly.
The Edible Oil Associations were advised to take up the issue with their members immediately and ensure that the MRP of each oil is reduced in line with the decline in the international prices of edible oils with immediate effect. Price to distributors (PTD) by the manufacturers and refiners also needs to be reduced so that the price decline was not diluted in any way, the Ministry of Consumer Affairs, Food & Public Distribution said in a release.
The representatives were informed that whenever a reduction in price to distributors was made by the manufacturers/refiners, the benefit should be passed on to the consumers. The Department may be kept informed on a regular basis. Some companies who have not reduced their prices and kept their MRP higher than other brands have also been advised to reduce prices.
Other issues like price data collection and packaging of edible oils were also discussed in this meeting. Earlier, in pursuance of the Department’s meetings with leading edible oil associations, the MRP of edible oils such as Sunflower Oil, Soyabean Oil and Mustard Oil were reduced by the industry.
The reduction in oil prices came in the wake of the reduction of international prices and reduced import duty on edible oils making them cheaper. The industry was advised to ensure that the complete benefit of the reduced duty is passed on to the consumers.
The falling edible oil prices will help in cooling inflation as well.
The DFPD closely monitors and reviews the prices of edible oils in the country and steps in whenever any intervention is required to ensure the affordability of the oils that forms an important part of the diet. The international and domestic prices of edible oil were on an upward swing during 2021-22 due to many global factors including higher input and logistic costs.