India Spices: Cardamom up 4%, jeera, turmeric up on short covering

Wednesday, May 29, 2019


By Gautami Koli


MUMBAI – The most-active June cardamom futures on Multi Commodity Exchange of India remained locked in 4% upper circuit tracking the firm trend in spot markets amid supply shortage, traders said.


"Cardamom daily offerings at Spices Board's auctions in Kerala remained in a range of 20-30 tn, almost 40% lower than last year due to crop losses over last couple of years…arrivals are likely to decline further in the coming days," said Saseendra Babu, managing director of Vandanmedu Green Gold Cardamom Producer Co.


A likely delay of around two months in the new harvest season and lower output view in the coming 2019-20 (Jul-Jun) season further raised concern over supply, Babu said.


On National Commodity & Derivatives Exchange, futures contract of jeera, coriander and turmeric ended higher as investors covered short positions after prices fell sharply to multi-week lows on Tuesday, traders said. A sharp fall in open interest in these spices indicated short covering. 


Talk of removal of some export sops and India Meteorological Department sticking to its forecast of near-normal monsoon has had a big correction in farm commodities, including jeera, coriander and turmeric on Tuesday. In an exclusive interview to Cogencis, IMD Director General K.J. Ramesh said that El Nino was weakening and may not have any impact on monsoon rains.


Lower arrivals of coriander and turmeric in spot markets also supported prices. In the key market in Ramganj, Rajasthan, coriander arrivals were at 6,000 bags (1 bag = 40 kg), down 1,500 bags from Tuesday, whereas turmeric arrivals in the key market of Erode, Tamil Nadu, were at 4,000 bags (1 bag = 65 kg), down 2,000 bags from Tuesday, traders said.


On Indian Commodity Exchange, pepper futures ended a tad higher and prices are expected to remain in a range of 350-370 rupees per kg in the near term likely due to lower imports from Vietnam, traders said.


May futures contract of mentha oil on MCX hit the 4% lower circuit as traders unwound long positions to avoid delivery of old stock ahead of expiry of contract on Friday. Expectation of a rise in new arrivals of mentha oil to 200-250 drums by next week also weighed on prices. 


Following are the closing prices of the most active contracts of spices compared with the previous session's levels:


Jun corianderNCDEX  1007,310.0095     18,080(-) 1,680
Jun jeeraNCDEX  100 17,375.0035   4,914(-) 666
Jun turmericNCDEX  100 6,924.00889,435(-) 515
Jun cardamom*MCX    1 2,477.0095.174(-) 12
Jun mentha oil*MCX    11,273.00(-) 8.56031
Jul pepperICEX1369.050.10617

* Open interest on MCX, ICEX are in lots.


Following are the expected support and resistance levels for contracts of spices for trade on Thursday:







Coriander 7,202.007,378.00
Cardamom 2,452.302,489.50
Mentha oil 1,268.601,279.60



Edited by Mainak Moitra


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