Ministry of Agriculture estimates record foodgrains production in 2016-17
The Dollar Business Bureau
The Ministry of Agriculture has released the second production estimates of foodgrains for the crop year ending 2016-17 (July-June). A fairly good monsoon after two consecutive years of sparse rainfall has boosted production estimates to record levels of 271.98 mt (million tonnes).
This year's forecast beats the highest foodgrains production record of 265.04 mt achieved in 2013-14 by 6.94 mt. There is an 8% increase in comparison to last year's (2015-16) production levels which stood at 251.57 mt. The current year's estimate is higher than the average foodgrain production in the last five years (2011-2012 to 2015-16) by 14.97 mt.
Rice, pulses, wheat, maize, tur, urad, oilseeds and coarse cereals are the categories that are likely to achieve record production this year. Sugarcane and Jute & Mesta production is likely to reduce, according to a report released by the Ministry of Agriculture. The foodgrains basket is inclusive of wheat, pulses, rice and coarse cereals.
Rice production, estimated at 108.86 mt is 2.21 mt higher than the previous record of 106.65 mt in 2013-14.
The wheat crop, estimated at 96.64 mt is also a record produce, up from the previous record of 95.85 mt achieved during 2013-14.
For coarse cereals, the estimated production output stands at a new record level of 44.34 mt, surpassing highest recorded produce of 43.40 mt in 2010-11.
Pulses are likely to touch a new high of 22.14 mt, crossing the record produce of 19.25 mt in 2013-14.
Oilseeds production is pegged at 33.6 mt, a new record marginally higher than the previous record of 32.75 mt in 2013-14.
Among the categories that are likely to register a fall in output, sugarcane produce is estimated at 309.98 mt, significantly lower than last year's (2015-16) figure of 348.45 mt. Jute & Mesta is estimated at 10.06 mt, which is marginally lower than 10.52 mt recorded in 2015-16.
Cotton production is expected to increase to 32.51 million bales (of 170 kg each) from 30.01 million bales in 2015-16. The increase is predicted despite a lower crop area due to enhanced productivity.
Year-on-year, the increase registered in rice is about 4.2%. For wheat, coarse cereals and pulses, the productivity is expected to rise by 4.7%, 15% and 35% respectively, in comparison to crop year 2015-16. Oilseeds are also predicted to show a whooping 33% production growth.
Even as sugar output declined 10% since October 2016 due to low sugarcane production in Maharashtra, the latest record estimates for foodgrains give good reason to cheer.