India set for record foodgrain output in 2017-18: Agriculture ministry
NEW DELHI: India’s foodgrain production is forecast to grow to a record in the crop year ending June 2018 after a normal monsoon and wider planting in winter, the agriculture ministry said.
Foodgrain output is expected to increase 0.9% to 277.49 million tonnes, exceeding the previous record of 275.11 million tonnes during 2016-17, the ministry said in its second advance estimate of major crops.
Output of rice, pulses, coarse cereals, cotton and sugarcane is expected to be higher this year, while wheat and oilseeds production may decline.
The first advance estimate was issued in September 2017. The third estimate will be released by May and the fourth by August.
“As a result of near-normal rainfall during monsoon 2017 and various policy initiatives taken by the government, country has witnessed record foodgrain production in the current year,” the agriculture ministry said.
Rice production is expected to climb to a record 111.01 million tonnes this crop year, 1.2% higher than last year’s output.
Wheat output is pegged at 97.11 million tonnes, a decrease of 1.42% from the previous year. The country’s highest wheat production was at 98.51 million tonnes in 2016-17.
Pulses are projected at 23.95 million tonnes compared with 23.13 million tonnes in the previous year.
Production of oilseeds, including groundnut, castor, sesamum, niger, mustard, linseed, safflower, sunflower and soyabean, is set to fall 4.45% to 29.82 million tonnes, led by a 13% decline in soyabean.
The government predicts cotton production will increase 4.11% to 33.92 million bales of 170 kg each.
Coarse cereal production will be at a record 45.42 million tonnes.
Production of sugarcane is estimated at 353.23 million tonnes, which is 15.4% higher than last year’s 306.07 million tonnes.