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Foodgrain production to reach at record high of 316 MT in pandemic-hit year: Govt | India News – Times of India

NEW DELHI: In what could be a big boost to the overall rural economy in the pandemic-hit year, the agriculture ministry on Wednesday estimated an all-time record foodgrains’ production of 316 million tonnes in the country during 2021-22 crop year with major crops such as rice, wheat, maize, pulse and gram breaking their respective previous records. Among non-foodgrains basket, outputs of rapeseed & mustard and sugarcane too are estimated at record levels.
The latest estimates, released by the ministry, shows the foodgrains’ output in 2021-22 is expected to be 6 million tonnes (MT) — nearly 2% — more than the overall production of 310 MT in the previous year. Figures show that the production during 2021-22 is higher by over 25 MT than the previous five years’ (2016-17 to 2020-21) average production of foodgrains. The consistent increase in overall output has happened despite Covid-19 challenges in two consecutive years.
“The new record of foodgrains production in the country is the result of hard work of farmers, efficient research of scientists and farmer friendly policies of the government,” said agriculture minister Narendra Singh Tomar.
The ministry banked on higher output of Kharif (summer sown) crops and record acreage of Rabi (winter sown) crops to arrive at its latest estimates. Though three more estimates will be released for the current crop year (July-June cycle), the second one is generally closer to the final figures. “Though the final figures will depend on the Rabi output in April-May, the current acreage shows the least possibility of any major change if standing crops do not face any damage due to extreme weather events,” said an official who has been tracking both output and acreage data of crops.
The ministry’s figures show the total production of rice during 2021-22 at a record 128 MT which is higher by over 11 MT than the last five years’ average production of around 117 MT. Similarly, production of wheat during 2021-22 is estimated at a record 111 MT which is higher by over 7 MT than the average wheat production of 104 MT.
Among non-foodgrain basket, oilseeds production during 2021-22 is estimated at record 37 MT which is higher by over 1 MT than the production of 36 MT during 2020-21. The production of oilseeds this year is, however, higher by over 4 MT than the average oilseeds production. Rapeseed & mustard took a major share of growth – thanks to the announcement of higher minimum support price (MSP) for this crop, keeping in view the ongoing diversification efforts so that farmers can look to options other than wheat and rice.
The total acreage of Rabi crops in the current season as on February 4 stands at 700 lakh hectares compared to 690 lakh hectares during corresponding period last year, showing an increase of over 1%. However, acreage of oilseeds jumped to 102 lakh hectares which is an increase of around 23% compared to the previous season.
As part of its move to encourage farmers towards oilseeds and reduce country’s import bills, the ministry had before the beginning of the Rabi sowing season last year announced the highest hike (both in percentage and absolute term) of 8.6% in the MSP of mustard/rapeseed and lowest hike of 2% in case of the most popular winter sown crop wheat.
As a result, higher sown area of oilseeds is reported this year from most of the oilseeds producing states such as Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Haryana, Gujarat, Telangana, Karnataka, Punjab, Assam, Maharashtra and Himachal Pradesh.

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