The government’s paddy procurement has increased marginally by 1.31 per cent to 231 lakh tonnes so far in the 2022-23 kharif marketing year from the year-ago period, according to the food ministry.
Normally, paddy procurement begins immediately after the withdrawal of the Southwest monsoon from October onwards. However in southern states, especially in Kerala and Tamil Nadu, it begins from September.
The government aims to procure 771.25 lakh tonnes of paddy in the 2022-23 kharif marketing season (October-September). The actual procurement stood at record 759.32 lakh tonnes in the previous kharif marketing season.
According to the ministry, paddy procurement is progressing smoothly in 13 procuring states/UTs viz. Punjab, Chandigarh, Chhattisgarh, Uttarakhand, Himachal Pradesh, Bihar, Uttar Pradesh, Gujarat, J&K, Kerala, Telangana, Haryana and Tamil Nadu.
The paddy purchase was over 231 lakh tonnes till November 11 this year as against 228 lakh tonnes in the year-ago period, it said.
Over 13.50 lakh farmers have already benefited from the ongoing procurement operations with minimum support price value of Rs 47,644 crore, it added.
The rainfall condition this year has been fairly good in the country and the production of paddy is expected to remain normal.
With the inclusion of rabi (winter) paddy, it is expected that around 900 lakh tonnes paddy is going to be procured during the entire 2022-23 marketing year.
There is sufficient stock of foodgrains available under the central pool to meet the requirement under the welfare schemes.
Procurement in other states will commence soon and all arrangements are in place for hassle-free procurement operations, the ministry added.
The paddy procurement is undertaken by both state-owned Food Corporation of India (FCI) and private agencies. Paddy is procured at the minimum support price directly from the farmers and is utilised for meeting the demand under several welfare schemes.
Paddy is grown in both kharif (summer) and rabi (winter) seasons. But 80 per cent of the country’s total paddy production comes from the kharif season.
According to the first estimate of the agriculture ministry, the country’s paddy production is estimated to decline 6 per cent to 104.99 million tonnes in the 2022-23 kharif season due to decrease in paddy acreage in the wake of poor rains in key producing states, especially in Jharkhand.
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