For the first time, the country’s buffalo meat exports in the first three quarters of the current fiscal have surpassed that of Basmati rice.
As per the data with Agricultural and Processed Food Products Exports Development Authority (Apeda), the buffalo meat exports in April-December period rose over 18% y-o-y to Rs 22,986 crore.
The shipment of Basmati rice in the same period fell marginally to Rs 20,471 crore mainly due to import curbs by Iran, the largest export destination for Basmati rice.
In 2013 -14, the country exported Basmati worth of Rs 29,291 crore while buffalo meat shipment was at Rs 26,457 crore.
Sources in the commerce ministry told FE the value of buffalo meat shipment in the current fiscal would top the basket of India’s agricultural and processed goods’ exports.
Officials said that concerted efforts to eliminate diseases such as rinderpest and foot-and-mouth disease in buffalo have borne fruit, evident in the sharp jump in exports of meat products in the last few years. Countries such as Vietnam, Malaysia, Egypt, Thailand and Saudi Arabia are the key export destinations for the buffalo meat.
In the last fiscal, the country’s agricultural goods exports from the APEDA basket was Rs 1,36,920 crore, which monitors shipment of 22 commodities such as rice, wheat, buffalo meat, fruits and vegetables, pulses and other meat products. In April to December period, the country had exported agricultural goods worth of Rs 99,429 crore.
Despite the fall in Basmati exports, total volume of rice shipment in April-December 2014 increased by more than 4% y-o-y to Rs 35,061 crore mainly because of a 12% rise in the non-basmati rice exports. Another worrying trend has been a sharp fall in the realisation from Guargum shipment because of the decline in prices. The realisation from Guargum, mostly used in the US-based oil exploration company, declined more than 12% y-o-y to Rs 8,001 crore in Apri-December 2014.
However, the shipment of processed vegetables and fruits have seen a sharp rise of 38% and 11%, respectively in April-December period. The value of exports of processed vegetables and fruits was Rs 1,243 crore and Rs 2,670 crore, respectively, in the same period.
The shipment of other commodities which rose include poultry products, grounuts and cocoa products.
Apeda has identified 20 odd clusters across the country for sustaining growth in the food product exports in the future.
These clusters include Basmati rice (Haryana & Punjab), buffalo meat (western Uttar Pradesh), grape and grape wine (Nashik, Maharastra), pomegranate (Satara and Pune, Maharashtra), dehydrated onion and garlic (Gujarat), poultry or egg (Namakkal) and mango pulp (Uttar Pradesh and Maharashtra).