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Farmers worried as cotton yield may be hit this year due to poor rains

Farmers keep their fingers crossed, rainfall in the July - August period crucial for plant growth

Dilip Kumar Jha  |  Mumbai 

Farmers worried as cotton yield may be hit this year due to poor rains

Even as seem inclined to bring more area under this year, they fear a decline in yield due to deficient in major growing areas during the last three weeks.

The India Meteorological Department (IMD) forecast this year's monsoon, like last year's, to be normal. But, despite being a normal in terms of the long-period average (LPA), distribution remained a worry last year. While the middle, northern and eastern parts of India received above normal rainfall, the western and southern parts remained deficient. Experts have started fearing a repeat of last year, with reports of deficient in large cotton-growing regions.

Farmers' fears of lower yields this year assume significance as they had achieved record productivity and got better prices last year despite lower acreage. Encouraged by last year's realisation, have slowed down the speed of sowing after over 50 per cent increase in acreage early this season.

"While the Advisory Board (CAB) is likely to come out with output forecast, we are estimating 10 per cent increase in acreage with an output of 350 lakh (35 million) bales this year," said Kavita Gupta, Commissioner, Ministry of Textiles, Government of India, on the sidelines of 65th National Garment Fair here on Monday.

Stagnating yield despite increase in area
Crop year (Oct-Sept) Area (lakh ha) Output (lakh bales) Yield (kg/ha)
2010-11 111.42 339 517
2011-12 121.78 367 512
2012-13 119.78 370 525
2013-14 119.60 398 566
2014-15 128.46 386 511
2015-16 118.77 338 484
2016-17 105.00 351 568
2017-18 - 350 -
Source: Advisory Board, Corporation of India; 1 bale=170 kg

Arun Dalal, a large city-based trader and exporter, said, "The crop is projected to get delayed by at least a month and the yield prospect also seems to get affected due to a delay in sowing. Strong enquiries have been reported from the northern region, though a delay in upcoming crop may prompt immediate bargains. The demand of has been good. Therefore, prices may rise further and may sustain the prevailing range of Rs 42,500-44,500 a tonne.

Meanwhile, private weather forecasting agency Skymet had reported a four per cent surplus in June. But, it has forecast July to remain rainfall-deficient. "Rains over most parts of interior Maharashtra, Telangana, Andhra Pradesh, interior Karnataka and Tamil Nadu will remain subdued for the next 4-5 days. Gujarat, Rajasthan and western parts of Haryana and west Madhya Pradesh will also see scanty rains only," Skymet said in its latest report

Meanwhile, data compiled by the Ministry of Agriculture showed sowing area under rose marginally to 7.2 million hectare (ha) by July 7 compared to 6.8 million ha by the same time last year.

"during July and August are crucial for Indian agriculture. Hence, we will have to wait until the end of August before making any firm assessment on agricultural output this kharif season," said Madan Sabnavis, Chief Economist, Care Ratings.

Fears of started mounting in for re-sowing of seeds in the areas where rainfalls remained deficient so far this season and crops damaged thereupon.

Meanwhile, have increased sowing of During most period of last year, prices remained above the minimum support price (MSP) unlike the case of oilseeds and pulses which continued to trade below the almost throughout the season. Prompted by last year's realization, have increased their sowing area by a staggering 45 per cent so far this season.

Data compiled by the Advisory Board (CAB) under the Ministry of showed India's yield at a record high last year at 568 kgs per ha compared to 484 kgs per ha for the previous year due to favourable climatic condition. The yield, however, remained abysmally higher than that of 566 kgs per ha received in 2013-14.

yield stagnates despite increase in area

Crop year (Oct - Sept) Area (lakh ha) Output (lakh bales) Yield (kg / ha)

2010-11 111.42 339 517

2011-12 121.78 367 512

2012-13 119.78 370 525

2013-14 119.6 398 566

2014-15 128.46 386 511

2015-16 118.77 338 484

2016-17 105 351 568

2017-18 - 350 -

Sources : Advisory Board, Corporation of India; 1 bale = 170 kgs

 

 

First Published: Wed, July 12 2017. 01:36 IST
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