Kharif Pulses Procurement 55% Short Of Target

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The lower procurement by Nafed, however, has resulted in pulses being sold below MSP in the open market.

Mar 15, 2019, 08.54 AM IST

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pulses-getty
The government has spent Rs 9,372 crore buying pulses and oilseeds from 12,38,547 farmers at MSP.

New Delhi: Sitting on an inventory of over 4.5 million tonnes, the government has so far procured around 1.7 million tonnes of

pulses

and

oilseeds

, down 55 per cent from the targeted procurement of 3.8 million tonnes for the

kharif

season. Last year, the government had purchased a record 2.55 million tonnes of pulses and oilseeds, achieving 75 per cent of the targeted 3.36 million tonnes summer harvest.

The procurement of winter pulses and oilseeds is underway, for which the government has set a target of 4.3 million tonnes. In the previous rabi or winter cropping season, it had purchased around 4 million tonnes out of the targeted 5.5 million tonnes.

“We don’t buy whatever hits the mandis. Nearly half the arrivals in mandi are below FAQ (fair and average quality) standards, which we reject. The dip in procurement is also due to less production of tur dal in Maharashtra and low output of groundnut in Gujarat,” a senior official of National Agricultural Cooperative Marketing Federation of India Ltd (Nafed), the central government agency which buys pulses and oilseeds at minimum support price (MSP), told ET on condition of anonymity.

The government has spent Rs 9,372 crore buying pulses and oilseeds from 12,38,547 farmers at MSP in the 2018-19 kharif crop season.

“In the last three years, the government had been quite aggressive in pulses procurement. This year, we are focusing more on managing the balance stock of over 4.5 million tonnes so that the prices of pulses and oilseeds remain range-bound. The challenge is now to maintain the price balance. Drastic fall in prices will hurt farmers and price rise will impact consumers,” the official said.

The lower procurement by Nafed, however, has resulted in pulses being sold below MSP in the open market.

“Since the government is going slow on buying, the ease in availability of produce has softened prices. As against the MSP of Rs 4,620 a quintal, farmers are selling gram (chana) in the range of Rs 4,100-4,200 per quintal. Similarly, moong is being sold by farmers at Rs 4,000 per quintal in open market, against the MSP of Rs 6,975 a quintal,” the official said.

According to the second advance estimate, the production of kharif pulses is likely to be 9 million tonnes while winter pulses will constitute 15 million tonnes. The production of oilseeds is likely to touch 315 million tonnes.



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