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India’s foodgrain output fell 4.66 pc in 2014-15

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New Delhi :India’s foodgrain production is estimated to have declined 4.66 per cent to 252.68 million tonnes (MT) in 2014-15 crop year due to poor monsoon and unseasonal rains in February-March.

The country had registered a record foodgrain production of 265.04 MT in 2013-14 crop year (July-June). Wheat, rice, coarse cereals and pulses are part of the foodgrain basket.

“Total foodgrain production in the country is estimated at 252.68 MT, which is lower by 12.36 MT than the last year’s record foodgrain production of 265.04 MT,” an official statement said.

While releasing the fourth advance estimates for 2014-15, the Agriculture Ministry today said the production of most of the crops fell because of a bad monsoon in 2014 and unseasonal rains/hailstorms during February-March 2015, which affected kharif (summer-sown) and rabi (winter-sown) crops.

Rice production is estimated to have fallen to 104.80 million tonnes (MT) in 2014-15 against the record output of 106.65 MT in the previous year.

Wheat output is estimated to have declined to 88.94 MT in 2014-15 as against a record 95.85 MT achieved in the previous year.

The Ministry has revised downwards the production of wheat, pulses and oilseeds from its earlier estimates released on May 13. Wheat output was then pegged at 90.78 MT, pulses at 17.38 MT and oilseeds at 27.38 MT.

“It may be noted that production of kharif crops during 2014-15 suffered due to bad monsoon. Unseasonal rains and hailstorm during February-March 2015 had a significant impact on production of rabi crops.

“As a result of setback in kharif as well as rabi seasons, the production of most of the crops in the country declined during 2014-15,” the statement read.

India had received 12 per cent deficient rains from the South-West monsoon in 2014.

As per the fourth estimate, production of coarse cereals is estimated to have declined to 41.75 MT in 2014-15 from 43.29 MT in the year-ago period.

Pulses and oilseeds production in the country, which is dependent on imports for lentils and edible oils, is also estimated to have dropped to 17.20 MT and 26.68 MT, respectively, in 2014-15.

In the previous year, pulses output stood at 19.25 MT and that of oilseeds at 32.74 MT.

Cotton production is estimated to have declined marginally to 35.48 million bales (of 170 kgs each) from 35.80 million bales while jute and mesta output too fell to 11.45 million bales (of 180 kg each) from 11.69 million bales in the period under the review.

Sugarcane output is estimated to have risen to 359.33 MT from 352.21 MT in the said period.

The government releases four advance estimates followed by a final estimate of foodgrain production.

PTI