Mandi prices of key kharif pulses and oilseeds — tur and soybean — continue to rule above their respective minimum support prices (MSPs), due to robust demand and farmers holding back stocks in anticipation of higher prices in the coming months.
The average mandi prices of tur in Latur, Maharashtra was ruling at around Rs 6,500 per quintal against the MSP of Rs 6,300 per quintal announced by the government. Traders say that prices are expected to rule above MSP in the coming months because of reports of crop losses in the key producing states of Maharashtra and Karnataka.
According to official data, the tur output in Maharashtra, the biggest producer of the pulses variety, is estimated to decline by more than 33% in 2021-22 to around 9.6 lakh tonnes, from 14.5 lakh tonnes reported in 2020-21. Similarly, in Karnataka also there are anticipated crop losses, which has led to farmers holding back their stocks, as the pulse variety has shelf-life of more than a year.
Against the target of 7 lakh tonnes of current year procurement, farmers’ cooperative NAFED has barely procured around 7,000 tonnes of tur under the government’s Price Support Scheme (PSS) operation so far.
In case of soybean, the mandi prices in Indore, Madhya Pradesh is currently at Rs 6,545 per quintal, around 65% more than the MSP of Rs 3,950 per quintal. According to Soyabean Processors Association of India, around 40% of the total estimated production of 118 lakh tonne in 2021-22 has arrived in the market.
Similarly in the case of rabi oilseeds, especially mustard, mandi prices at Alwar, Rajasthan, are ruling at Rs 7,215 per quintal, around 43% above the MSP. This spike is notwithstanding the anticipated bumper production of mustard seed in the country. However, in the case of chana (gram), which has around 45% share in production of pulses in the country, prices are currently ruling around the MSP of Rs 5,230 per quintal and there is an anticipation of a bumper crop because of higher sowing compared to the previous year.