Wheat production may exceed record estimate, says Pawar
Sporadic incidence of yellow rusts in key producing states of Punjab and Haryana are unlikely to hit wheat output, Pawar said on Friday. However, the government needs to invest more in agriculture to scale up or even maintain the current elevated level of grain production, he added.
“I am not at all worried about wheat production because the situation is good. Whatever the assessment we have made on production, there will be improvement. I don’t expect any problem,” Pawar said. According to the second-advanced estimate released this month, wheat production in 2011-12 is expected to trip last year’s record level of 86.87 million tonne, driving up the country’s overall grain production to an all-time-high of 250.42 million tonne.
“There won’t be any problem in meeting the requirement of the National Food Security Bill.... My worry is we have to keep continuation (in raising grain output). For the sake of continuity, we have to provide more investment in agriculture,” he said, calling for adequate precautionary measures to mitigate impact of natural disasters in bad years.
The government is planning to provide legal entitlement to 63.5% of the country’s population for subsidised grain under the food security Act, and it needs to procure more than 60 million tonne
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