Wheat output likely to cross govt estimate despite unseasonal rains
Agriculture secretary PK Basu said although there have been sporadic damages to the wheat crop in some places, the overall output for the country won’t be affected due to record planting over 29 million hectares in 2011-12. “The weather has been conducive for the most part of the year. In fact, I still believe wheat production may exceed the last estimate,” Basu said. Total grain output may even touch 255 million tonne on higher production of rice, wheat and cereals if weather conditions remain good, compared with the official estimate of 250.42 million tonne, he added.
Showers over vast wheat-growing regions in northern India had stoked apprehensions that fresh pest attacks and unwanted moisture before harvesting may cut output. The production of staple winter grain has climbed at a fast pace since 2009-10 when the country harvested 80.80 million tonne. The agriculture ministry is expected to announce its third advance estimate of crop production later this month. Basu also said the government will likely announce the forecast of monsoon rains in the last week of April.
Policy makers have been closely monitoring prospects of food crops in 2011-12 as well as forecast of seasonal showers this year, as the country is planning to implement a proposed food security act that will widen the
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