India’s foodgrain estimates go up; pulse imports slower on higher production

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Photo courtesy: ADB

India is going to be looking at a healthy foodgrain production this fiscal due to a strong monsoon, according to the agriculture ministry.

The third advance estimates released by the ministry shows the country’s food grain production is estimated 2 million metric tons (mmt) higher than forecast in February 2018 at 279.5 mmt, a record level that is 4.4 mmt or 1.6% higher than estimated for 2016/17.

This recent report also includes an upward revision in estimated production for both the summer Kharif crop and the winter Rabi crop of pulses. Total production was revised 560,000 metric tons higher to a record 24.51 mmt.

Reports are also coming in that Rice (basmati) and a few other bold grains prices have risen  by up to Rs 100 per quintal at the wholesale grains market due to increased demand.

However, wheat has slipped on ample stocks against reduced off take by flour mills.
Other bold grains like, barley and maize have risen by Rs. 40 each to Rs 1,650-1,655 and Rs 1,590-1,600 per quintal. Bajra too went up by Rs 20 to Rs 1,330-1,335 per quintal.

Post a plush output, the India’s Agriculture Ministry is now estimating the country’s imports to go down 1 mmt in 2017/18 to 5.65 mmt. This is linked to the 2017 record level of production supported by favorable monsoon rains, along with other measures that includes import tariffs, import quantity caps on certain crops, while also tied to support payments used to encourage production.

In recent days, India’s government has announced a quota system for certain pulses, capping the import volumes allowable for toor, urad and moong, while inviting importers to apply for import licenses with the stipulation that imports will be received prior to 31 August, 2018.

Uttara is a correspondent with Indoasiancommodities. You can write to her on uttara.malhotra@indoasiancommodities.in.

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