Agriculture Current Affair 21 September 2022

Lower Kharif sowing calls for deft management of foodgrain stock, prices: FinMin Report

A Finance Ministry report on Saturday underlined the need for deft management of stocks of agriculture commodities in view of lower crop-sowing for the Kharif Season, stressing there should be no room for complacency on the inflation front. Overall, inflationary pressures in India appear to be on a decline with a pre-emptive set of administrative measures by the government, agile monetary policy and easing of international commodity prices and supply-chain bottlenecks, according to the monthly Economic Review released by the Finance Ministry.

However, it said, there is no “room for complacency on the inflation front as lower crop-sowing for the Kharif season calls for deft management of stocks of agricultural commodities and market prices without unduly jeopardising farm exports.”

India’s rice production could fall by 10-12 million tonnes during the Kharif season this year due to a fall in paddy sowing area, Food Secretary Sudhanshu Pandey had said earlier this month.

Rice prices likely to remain elevated owing to fall in Kharif output

The rice prices are likely to remain elevated for some more time owing to a shortfall in rice production which can be linked to a fall in paddy sowing area.

The price rise factor has added to the pre-existing inflationary pressures that the slowing economy is already grappling with.

Recently, the retail inflation surged to 7 per cent due to increased food prices, including that of cereals. The increase has led to retail inflation reversing a three-month declining trend in August.

Similarly, the wholesale price inflation, which declined to 11-month low, also showed price pressures from cereals resulting from wheat output being impacted by severe heat waves in some parts of the country.

MSP Committee to hold 2nd meeting on Sep 27 in Hyderabad

The government’s committee on the minimum support price (MSP), natural farming and crop diversification will hold its second meeting on September 27 in Hyderabad.

In the first meeting held on August 22 in the national capital, the committee — headed by former

Agriculture Secretary Sanjay Agrawal — had formed three internal sub-groups to deliberate on the mandated topics.

The panel has 26 members including the chairman, while three membership slots are kept aside for representatives of Samyukta Kisan Morcha (SKM). But the SKM has rejected the committee and decided to stay away from the meeting.

“The second meeting will be held on September 27 in the campus of the National Institute of Agricultural Extension Management (MANAGE) in Hyderabad,” one of the members of the committee told PTI on the condition of anonymity.

5 states ready to procure chana at discount from Centre for their welfare schemes

Five states – Chhattisgarh, Tamil Nadu, Himachal Pradesh, Gujarat and Karnataka – have expressed their intention to procure chana from the central government at the discounted rate of Rs 8 per kg for various welfare schemes.

“These states will send indents to us after working out their requirement,” said an official aware of the matter.

The measure is a part of the market intervention scheme to prevent farmers from resorting to the distress sales of chana. It will also help in improving market sentiment and rationalising the price of the pulses and adding required protein to the beneficiaries of the welfare schemes, he added.

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