Monday, 3 September 2018

Foodgrain

Riding on a near normal monsoon, output of most food crops is projected to hit record levels in 2017-18 to give an all-time high foodgrain harvest of 284.83 million tonnes, 3.5 per cent higher than that of the previous year, according to the 4th advance estimates released on Tuesday.
Rice production is expected to touch a peak of 112.91 mt, 3 per cent more than last year’s, while wheat will just fall shy of the 100-mt mark, the data released by the Agriculture Ministry showed.
Pulses production, on the other hand, is seen crossing 25 mt, despite a substantial fall expected in tur production. The record increase expected in urad and gram will compensate for the tur shortfall.
Despite an anticipated 17 per cent drop in soybean output to 10.98 mt, total oilseeds production is projected to be similar to that of the previous year, at 31.31 mt, thanks to an impressive recovery expected in groundnut output at 9.18 mt, nearly 23 per cent higher than the 7.46 mt in 2016-17.

The production of coarse cereals too is expected to climb to a new high of 46.99 mt, up 3.22 mt from 2016-17, despite bajra yields being projected to slide 5 per cent.
A record 20 per cent increase in sugarcane production in 2017-18 to 376.9 mt has already precipitated a severe crisis in the sugar sector, requiring the government to intervene so that the sugarcane farmers, whose dues from sugar mills have mounted, get some reprieve. Cotton output, too, is projected to go up by more than 2 million bales (of 170 kg each) to 34.89 million bales, according to the official data.
The estimated maize output will be 28.72 mt, which is nearly 3 mt more than the final production in 2016-17.

Monday, 16 July 2018

Increase in paddy support price: Rice exporters concerned over competitiveness in global market


A 13 per cent increase in MSP of paddy has sent jitters among the non-basmati rice exporters, who fear that the price rise will make the Indian cereal unviable in the global market and threaten India’s position as the largest exporter of rice, they said. "While we welcome the increase in MSP for farmers, the government should also look at sustaining the growth in rice exports," said BV Krishna Rao, President of the Rice Exporters Association.

Govt incentives
The government could look at incentivesthrough schemes such as Merchandise Exports from India Scheme or interest subvention, he added. The rice exporters are planning to take up the issue with the Commerce Ministry soon.

Non-basmati shipments
Non-basmati rice shipments have emerged as a major component of the Indian farm produce exports in recent years helping the country to emerge as the largest exporter of the cereal. Non-basmati rice exports stood at 8.6 million tonnes (mt) valued at $3 billion last year. In the current, financial year, the shipments have maintained the growth trend with a weakening rupee aiding the exports. As per the latest data from Apeda, non-basmati rice shipments have grown 40 per cent in the first two months of current, financial year at 1.43 mt valued at $603 million ( Rs. 4,013 crore) over the corresponding last year. The non-basmati rice accounts for around a fifth of the Apeda’s export basket in value terms.

Export markets
Of India’s total rice production of 108 mt, the domestic consumption including the buffer stocks is estimated at around 97-98 mt, while the rest is exported mainly to countries in Africa, Bangladesh and SriLanka. Any slow-down in shipments will lead to accumulation of stocks and may influence the prices, the exporters said.

Monday, 9 April 2018

We were in the dark about Jordan’s new residue norms, claims rice exporters body


The All India Rice Exporters Association (AIREA) on Thursday said it has taken up the issue of Jordan rejecting rice containers of an Indian exporter early this week with agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (Apeda) and Jordan Chamber of Commerce. Jordan’s Agriculture Ministry has denied permission for offloading 12 containers carrying 270 tonnes of basmati rice from a North Indian exporter at its Aqaba port as Jordanian government laboratories found the pesticide residue in rice samples examined were higher than the maximum residue level (MRL). “The samples were found to have residue level (of fungicide tricyclazole) higher than it is now permitted. However, what is strange was that Jordan did not notify its decision to revise MRL and as a result, this information was not publicly available,” said AIREA Executive Director Rajen Sundaresan.

EU norms
“All of a sudden, Jordan has decided to adopt the European Union (EU) norms for tricyclazole residue, which stands at 0.01 parts per million (ppm). We had little knowledge about this,” he said, adding that the association has already written to Apeda and Jordan Chamber of Commerce. From January 1 this year, the EU decided to not allow the import of basmati rice whose tricyclazole levels exceed more than 0.01 ppm to its member countries, affecting most basmati exporters from India. Prior to the implementation of new norms, the MRL in Indian basmati was 1 ppm. The tolerance levels for tricyclazole in the US and Japan, interestingly, are much higher, at 3 ppm and 10 ppm respectively. Indian rice exporters have been lobbying with the Central government for getting the new norms relaxed by the EU for two years.

Options left
Sundaresan, who refused to name the exporter whose consignment has been blocked, said the options available to them include bringing the consignment back to India, or destroying it or re-routing the shipment to the countries where such MRL is permitted.
“The tricyclazole levels permitted in India is 3 ppm. When the consignment left India it was within the permissible limits. But Jordan has suddenly decided to follow the EU regime. We have written to them to find out since when it has come into effect,” the AIREA official said.

Friday, 19 August 2016

Time to rethink India’s rice policy

Of late, with growing income and awareness about nutritious food, there has been a noticeable decrease in the consumption of rice (a highcarb food) in Indian households. This change in consumption pattern, however, is not reflected in India’s agriculture policy which continues to revolve around rice and wheat. Moreover, current policies related to production, procurement, storage and distribution of rice are creating a number of internal and external problems.

The Centre is promoting rice production through a combination of support prices, assured procurement and subsidies on key inputs like irrigation, chemical fertilisers and electricity — the major proportion of input subsidies is consumed by rice. Thus, paddy’s MSP has risen from Rs. 580 per quintal in 200607 to Rs. 1,470 per quintal of 201617 at a CAGR of 10 percent. Then, there are Statespecific bonuses over and above the MSPs.
Read More...

Wednesday, 4 November 2015


"Iranian Govt. Lifted Ban on import of Basmati Rice The Iranian government on Tuesday lifted ban on import of Basmati rice. Due to availability of excess rice stocks, Iranian authorities had suspended imports of rice from the rest of the world since October 2014. The rice industry had been badly impacted due to the ban as Iran used to import nearly 1.2 million tonnes of rice from the Indian rice manufacturers. Therefore the lift in ban by Iran is a positive for the rice industry, and will boost rice exports from India in near future."

Saturday, 11 July 2015

Basmati Rice Exports May Increase by 10 Percent: APEDA

Basmati rice exports are likely to register an increase of about 10 % over the 3.7 mt recorded during the previous fiscal, according to the Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (APEDA).
For the 2015-16 fiscal, we are projecting exports of at least 4 mt. It is expected growth of the product for which there is steady demand. So, one can expect around 10 per cent growth, said AK Gupta, Director, Basmati Export Development Foundation, APEDA.
As of April, there was a shortfall in exports primarily because of Iran scaling back its imports due to surplus domestic availability, a situation that Gupta said has stabilised now. The country had imported 0.9 mt in 2014-15, as compared to 1.44 mt in the earlier fiscal.

Wednesday, 25 February 2015

Basmati exports may dip 10% on Iran ban

Iranian authorities have recently assured the Indian officials that the ban will be lifted shortly and the re-registration process of suppliers would commence soon.

Export Markets
A notification to this effect is likely to be issued by Iran by March 21. Higher demand from traditional markets such as United Arab Emirates and Qatar, and newer markets mainly in Africa such as Algeria, Angola, Ethiopia, Kenya, Nigeria and Tanzania among others have helped offset the impact of Iranian ban to certain extent. European countries such as Denmark and Czech Republic have seen an increase in basmati shipments from India.