The trebling of onion prices—from Rs 24 per kilo to Rs 70 per kilo—since April has been hurting not just household budgets, but street food vendors as well. Sellers of onion bhajis, who operate on very slim margins, have had to raise prices from Rs 20 to Rs 30 a plate since the beginning of the year. Some vendors have stopped selling the popular snack altogether because they feel customers will simply not be willing to pay beyond a certain price. High-end pubs and bistros, on the other hand, have seen only a marginal increase in the price of onion rings (for which they charge Rs 150 to Rs 190), and no fall in sales. Operating on very high margins, prices at these places see only yearly revisions, and are not affected by temporary spikes.
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(This story appears in the 20 September, 2013 issue of Forbes India. To visit our Archives, click here.)