India’s wheat production has increased to a record 101.20 million tonne (MT) for the crop year 2018-19 (July-June), up by 1.3% from a year ago, the agriculture ministry said, releasing the third advance estimate of the year’s crop output.
The overall foodgrain production is estimated at 283.37 MT, marginally down from 285.01 MT last year, due to fall in pulses and coarse cereals output.
The bumper foodgrains (rice, wheat, coarse cereals and pulses) output for the third consecutive year has also increased pressure on the government to ensure farmers get reasonable prices for their crops.
It has been found that most of the mandi prices were below their minimum support prices (MSPs) after the government last year fixed the benchmark prices at least 50% higher than their costs. In case of some pulses like moong and gram, prices were 35% below MSPs during the main harvesting period.
The assessment of production of different crops is based on the feedback received from the states and validated with information available from other sources, the ministry said in a statement.
Rice production in 2018-19 is estimated at record 115.63 mt, against 112.76 mt in the previous year while coarse cereals output is seen at 43.33 mt, down from 46.97 mt a year earlier.
Maize production is estimated at 27.82 mt while jowar output is pegged at 3.70 mt, both are lower from the year-ago levels. Pulses output, too, is pegged lower at 23.22 mt from last year’s record 25.42 mt.
In non-foodgrains category, oilseeds output is estimated to be flat at 31.42 MT as against 31.45 MT in the previous year. Cotton production could fall to 27.59 million bales (of 170 kg each) in 2018-19 from 32.80 million bales in the previous year.
Sugarcane production is estimated at record 400.37 MT, up from 379.90 MT in the previous year.
The output of jute and mesta is seen lower at 9.79 million bales (of 180 kg each) from 10.03 million bales.