Rains to reduce soyabean production by nearly 18 per cent in 2019

The excessive rains this year are likely to affect the soyabean production by around 20 lakh tonne in the country and stand at 89.9 lakh tonne, according to an assessment by the Soyabean Processors Association (SOPA). The soyabean output in 2019 is likely to fall nearly 18% from a year ago.

The estimated total production of soyabean crop across the country for 2019 is 89.941 lakh tonne (+- 5%), which is lower by 19.391 lakh tonne (-17.7%) as compared to final estimates for kharif 2018 and the average yield for 2019 is estimated as 836 kg/hectare as against 1,009 kg/hectare during 2018, according to top officials of the association.

DN Pathak, executive director, SOPA, presented the forecast of soyabean (Kharif 2019) crop on the concluding day of the two-day 3rd International Soya Conclave in Indore, as reported by the Financial Express.

SOPA conducted remote sensing satellite based area survey for finding the correct acreage under soyabean using scientific methods. The acreage based on satellite survey is 107.613 lakh hectare against the government’s higher figure of 113.988 lakh hectare. After a review of arrivals, crushing, exports and local consumption, it has become necessary to revise the crop estimates for 2018 from 114.833 lakh tonne to 109.332 lakh tonne, a reduction of 5.5 lakh tonne, Pathak stated.

The association felt that lower production could force the country, which is already the world’s biggest edible oil importer, to raise overseas buying of palm oil, sunflower oil and soya oil in the 2019-20 marketing year, starting from November 1.

The crop was badly affected in low-lying areas of Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra and Rajasthan due to water-logging, SOPA said. Madhya Pradesh, the biggest producer of soyabean in the country, received 44% above-average rainfall in 2019. Maharashtra and Rajasthan are the country’s second- and third-biggest producers.

This year, monsoon arrived at the right time and sowing was done between June 25 to July 15. In some areas in Maharashtra, sowing was done up to last week of July but the crop is badly affected in 15-30% low lying areas of Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra and Rajasthan due to water logging.

This year, SOPA carried out area estimation using remote sensing through satellite in 47 major soyabean growing districts of MP, Maharashtra and Rajasthan. The total area under soyabean in Kharif 2019 is estimated at 107.613 lakh hectare, as against the government’s estimate of 113.988 lakh hectare. SOPA had estimated 2018 kharif area at 108.396 lakh hectare.

Shekhar Ghosh is consulting editor, Indoasiancommodities.com. He has edited and written for publications like Business India, Business Standard, Business Today, Outlook and many other international publications. He can be reached at shekhar.ghosh@indoasiancommodities.in.

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