Why did Crude Edible Oil prices jump by 8% in a fortnight?

The prices have gone up by Rs 10-15 per Kg in the last fortnight. And there is no respite for the Indian consumers from cooking oil price inflation. The situation is likely to remain the same for at least a month. This is despite 10% export tax reduction by Indonesia and 5% duty reduction by India. 

There is an increased and additional demand for refined palm oil from India after easing the restrictions. There is also an increase in demand of palm oil by Nepal and Bangladesh due to the potential to send refined oil to India at zero duty. And whenever the demand increases, prices are bound to go up. 

The price of Crude Palm oil in Mumbai has increased 4.61% in a week, 9.66% in a month and close to 72% in a year. Crude soybean oil also has become costlier by about 10% in the past fortnight.  

Factors that have resulted in price hike:

  • The domestic prices are basically a reflection of International prices because India imports 56% to meet its domestic demand of Edible oils.  Although the Indian government announced Rs 20/ kg reduction in the price of edible oil, the international factors play an important role governing the prices of oil in India.
  • As India cut the import duty the international prices went up. This leads to the sudden price rise despite the reduction in import duty. Moreover, the rupee depreciation has made imports costlier. 
  • The rise in prices has been attributed to hot and dry weather in Canada, Brazil, Argentina and the US. Canada is reporting 45-48 degrees temperature and there have been reports of destruction of canola crop. Brazil, Argentina and the US are also experiencing dry weather which has affected the soybean crop. In India the delayed monsoon has been a matter of concern. The planting activity has been affected due to deficient rains in the central India.\
  • Another reason is the increasing no of Covid cases in Indonesia and Malaysia that led to concerns regarding palm production due to a shortage of labor.

source: https://krishijagran.com/

Tripura Encouraging Farmers for Commercial Cultivation of Agar

After Assam, now the Tripura government is also encouraging farmers for commercial cultivation of agar, which is used in world-class perfumeries and other sectors, authorities said on Saturday.

Biplab Kumar Deb, Chief Minister of Tripura, met with Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday to seek his help in facilitating the export of agar oil and chips to other countries.

In the current fiscal year, Tripura aims to export 75,000 kg of agar chips and 1,500 kg of agar oil. Over 50 lakh trees can be found throughout the state.

The Tripura government released the ‘Tripura Agar Wood Policy 2021,’ which aims to double agarwood plantations by 2025. The state’s agar trade potential was estimated to be around Rs 2000 crore.

Testing laboratories and trading centers would be established as part of the policy, as well as new technology for artificial inoculation.

Deb sent out a tweet “Agarwood and its products have enormous potential to revolutionize #Tripura’s economy. Last evening, I had a crucial conversation with Hon’ble PM @narendramodi Ji about the long-term development of the agarwood sector, with an emphasis on value addition, R&D, testing, and improved farming.”

He said in another tweet, “It’s always a pleasure to see Shri @PiyushGoyal ji, the Hon’ble Minister of Commerce and Industry, as well as the Minister of Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution, and Textiles. The issue of establishing a quota for the export of agarwood and agar products under CITES was discussed. He told me that he would be there for me.”

According to a Tripura government report, the state’s Agarwood industry has the potential to generate Rs 2,000 crore in revenue within two to three years, benefiting roughly 50,000 families.

According to a spokesperson for the Department of Industries and Commerce, “Outside of the hilly north-eastern region, transportation of diverse forest products such as agar and natural rubber is a major bottleneck. Natural rubber cannot be transported across Bangladesh or exported to a neighboring country due to various restrictions imposed by the Bangladesh government.”

source: https://krishijagran.com/

Top Varieties of Soybean in Madhya Pradesh

Soybean, one of the most cultivated crops in India contributes significantly to the Indian economy being a part of the Indian edible oil pool. Soybean is one of those crops that is an oilseed crop, a legume crop, and is also used to prepare flour.

India ranks fourth in respect to the production of soybean in the world. Not only this, many farmers are dependent on soybean farming, and it serves as a lifter of farmers’ economic status.

Commercial Production of Soybean

In India, commercial production of this leguminous oilseed has started after the mid-’60s with India leading the way, followed by Nepal. And in the early ’70s, the regional spread of soybean cultivation covered about 7,700 hectares in Madhya Pradesh, followed by Uttar Pradesh (5,900 hectares) and Maharashtra (1800 hectares). And by the time, production increased in Madhya Pradesh (more than 4 billion hectares till date), that is more than any other state in India.

And Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, and Rajasthan together contribute more than 96% of the area under cultivation and production of soybean in the country.

Madhya Pradesh: Soybean Hub

Talking about the major soybean-growing states, Madhya Pradesh ranks first in the list. Many varieties of soybean are grown in different districts of Madhya Pradesh including Indore, Dhar, Khandwa, Jhabua, Ujjain, Mandsaur, Neemuch, Shajapur, Barwani, Khargone, Bhopal, Sehore, Raisen, Vidisha, Betul, Rajgarh, Harda, Hoshangabad, and more.

There are about 2500 varieties of soybean, which come in different sizes, shapes & colors.

As per the information from ICAR-Indian Institute of Soybean Research, located at Indore, Madhya Pradesh, the following are the most grown soybean varieties in Madhya Pradesh:

  • Ahilya 1 (NRC 2)
  • Ahilya 3 (NRC 7)
  • Ahilya 2 (NRC 12)
  • Ahilya 4 (NRC 37)
  • JS 71-05
  • JS 335
  • JS 80-21
  • JS 75-46
  • MACS 58
  • JS 90-41
  • Indira Soy 9
  • JS 93-05
  • Kalitur
  • Parbhani Sona (MAUS 47)
  • Pratishtha (MAUS 61-2)
  • Monetta
  • Punjab-1
  • PK 472
  • Shakti (MAUS 81)

Rains halted, sowing of almost all major Kharif crops takes a big hit

As the monsoon gets delayed over most parts of India after a timely start, the sowing of major Kharif crops has seen a dip. Irrespective of when the rains arrive now, the sowing window for crops like moong, urad, and, to an extent, cotton might be too short for farmers to commence operations.

The All India Crop Situation report issued by the Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers’ Welfare shows sowing in over 499.87 lakh hectares (lh), against 558.11 lh last year, with area under almost all major crops, including moong, soyabean, paddy and cotton, reporting a dip.

Last year, when there was bumper sowing of crops, farmers had planted soyabean over 92.36 lh, which is down to 82.14 lh now; moong over 13.49 lh, against 11.92 lh this year; and cotton, the major kharif cash crop, over 104.83 lh against over 86.45 lh now.

Among cereal crops, bajra has been sown over 15.74 lh against 25.32 lh in 2020. Oilseeds have been sown over 112.55 lh, down from 126.13 lh in 2020. Pulses overall have also seen a dip, though minor, to over 52.49 lh from 53.35 lh last year.

Sugarcane is among the few exceptions, with sowing in over 53.56 lh, against above 52.65 lh last year.

In the absence of rains, farmers are either shifting to shorter-duration crops or waiting for enough soil moisture to commence sowing.

Since 2020, the India Meteorological Department (IMD) is following a revised monsoon onset and withdrawal calendar, according to which the normal date for rains to reach all regions of the country is July 8. As of Friday, July 9, the country had received 229.7 mm of rainfall, 6% below the normal of 243.6 mm, with spatial distribution showing a rainfall deficit except for the first two weeks of June.

Northwest India has reported the most significant deficit, of 18%. As of Friday, monsoon was delayed over Delhi, Punjab, Chandigarh, Haryana and Western Rajasthan. At -58%, Delhi is one of the most deficient states this season.

Normally farmers are advised not to sow groundnut, moong and urad if there is not enough soil moisture by July 15. Cotton sowing would be hit in case the rains continue to play truant till the end of July.

However, 2021 does not mark the most delayed monsoon onset in the parts of the country still to see rains. In 2012, against its normal date of June 29, Delhi had seen rains arrive on July 7.

Most previous monsoons between 2010 and 2020 also saw a similar break-phase between June fourth week and early July, though none lasted beyond 11 days. This time the break has stretched to close to three weeks. The monsoon of 2013 holds the record for seeing the fastest advance over the entire country — completed in 10 days — since 1941, the IMD said.

However, as per the latest weather forecast, the monsoon is all set to revive as the easterly winds have started blowing along with the lower levels from the Bay of Bengal. “The monsoon is likely to advance into the remaining parts of West Uttar Pradesh, Delhi, Haryana, Chandigarh, Punjab and Rajasthan by July 10,” the Met office’s weather report of Friday morning read.

source: https://indianexpress.com/

Farmers from Andhra Pradesh suffer losses due to severe drop in lemon prices

Lemon prices have plummeted, causing farmers in Andhra Pradesh to lose a lot of money. Lemon growers in the region are worried as the price of lemons has plunged for the second year in a row.

Although lemons are cultivated all year, the peak time is between March and June. Despite the fact that the season began well for the farmers, prices dropped from Rs 100 to Rs 8 per kilogram all of a sudden. Around 5,500 farmers in the Atchampet, Bellamkonda, and Tenali divisions of Guntur district grow lemons on 2,600 hectares.

Despite a bumper harvest last year, the farmers barely made any money owing to the Covid-19 lockout. They were barely able to afford their expenses. Despite the fact that there are no transportation limitations this year, the farmers have yet to make a profit because the harvest was lower than the previous year, along with falling lemon prices. They were in such bad shape that they couldn’t even afford to pay labor costs.

“No one expected the prices to drop suddenly,” Ramarao, a farmer from Tenali, said. I won’t receive a good price for the lemons if I harvest them now, and I can’t afford to pay labor costs. Farmers haven’t gathered their crop as a result of this,” he added.

Per acre, approximately 200 tikkis of lemons of which each tikki containing 50 kilos of lemon are typically produced. Pesticides, maintenance, and labor costs range from Rs 50,000 to Rs 60,000 per acre for a farmer.

From market yards in Tenali, Narasaraopet, and Sattenapalli, lemons produced in the region are shipped to Telangana, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, and Maharashtra.

Previously, farmers from Gujarat went through a similar tragedy when the state was ravaged by Cyclone Tauktae. Lemon prices had crashed to around Rs 7 per kilo as the farmers carried the fruits to the market that had fallen due to the cyclone.

source: https://krishijagran.com/

India starts exporting GI-certified Jalgaon banana to Dubai

In a major boost to India’s exports of Geographical Indications (GI) certified agricultural produce, a consignment of fibre and mineral rich ‘Jalgaon Banana’ has been shipped to Dubai, United Arab Emirates.

About 22 tonne of the GI certified banana was sourced from farmers of Tandalwadi village in Maharashtra’s Jalgaon district, a cluster identified under the new agri export policy.

In 2016, GI certification for the bananas of the region was registered with Nisargraja Krishi Vigyan Kendra (KVK) Jalgaon. India’s banana exports have been rising sharply because of adoption of farm practices on par with global standards.

Exports grew both in terms of volume as well as value to 1.95 lakh tonne (Rs660 crore) in FY20 from 1.34 lakh tonne (Rs413 crore) in FY19. In FY21 so far, the country has exported 1.91 lakh tonne of the nourishing fruit worth Rs619 crore.

India is the world’s leading producer of bananas, accounting for 25% of global output. Andhra Pradesh, Gujarat, Tamil Nadu, Maharashtra, Kerala, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar and Madhya Pradesh contribute more than 70% to the country’s banana production.

“APEDA promotes exports of agricultural & processed food products by providing assistance to the exporters under various components of its scheme such as Infrastructure Development, Quality Development, and Market Development. In addition, APEDA also conducts international Buyer Seller Meets, Virtual trade fairs with importing countries to promote agricultural & processed food products,” the commerce ministry said in a statement.

As part of the agriculture export policy, 46 unique product clusters have been identified for export promotion. Shipments have taken place from several of these clusters for the first time, including those of fresh vegetables and mangoes from Varanasi and black rice from Chandauli in Uttar Pradesh, the statement said.

India counts the US, China, Bangladesh, UAE, Vietnam, Saudi Arabia, Indonesia, Nepal, Iran, and Malaysia as its largest markets for agricultural produce. Exports to most of these destinations have grown, with the highest growth coming from Indonesia at 102.42%, followed by Bangladesh at 95.93%.

source: https://www.livemint.com/

COVID-19 second wave will not impact India’s Agri sector: Niti Aayog

Agriculture activities in May, when rural India saw the worst of the pandemic, remain at a bare minimum, Ramesh Chand, Niti Aayog member, said.

Niti Aayog member (agriculture) Ramesh Chand on June 6 said the second COVID-19 wave will not impact the Indian agriculture sector in anyway as rural areas saw spread of infections in May when agriculture activities remained at bare minimum.

“COVID-19 cases started spreading in the rural areas in the month of May…and agriculture activity in the month of May is bare minimal, particularly land-based activities,” he added. “…it (May) is a peak summer month and no crop is sown, no crop is harvested except some vegetables and off-season crops,” Mr. Chand further explained.

Agriculture activity, Mr. Chand said, peaks in the month of March or middle of April, after which it comes down significantly and again peaks with the arrival of monsoon.

“So, even if there is less availability of labor in the month of May till mid-June, I don’t think that will impact agriculture in any way,” Mr. Chand said.

On being asked why India is not self-sufficient in pulses production, he said there was need to increase pulses’ area under irrigation and that would make a lot of difference in production and stability in prices.

He added that “in India, our subsidy policy, our price policy, technology policy, have remained too much in favour of rice and wheat and sugarcane. So I strongly believe that along with the technological breakthrough, we need to make our procurement, our MSP favourable for pulses”.

Mr. Chand said the agriculture sector will grow more than 3% in 2021-22. The farm sector grew at 3.6% in the last fiscal. India’s economy contracted by less-than-expected 7.3% in the fiscal year ended March 2021 after the growth rate picked up in the fourth quarter, just before the world’s worst outbreak of coronavirus infections hit the country.

source: https://www.thehindu.com/

Queen Pineapple of Tripura: What’s So Special About This Variety?

Welcome to the land of hillocks and high hills adorned with valleys and rivers with moderately humid and warm climate in the Northeast of India. Welcome to Tripura.  

This is also the land of pineapples, jackfruits, litchis, oranges, limes, lemons, cashew nuts, and coconuts. The beauty of this land is that fruits are abundantly grown on hillocks, harnessing the well-distributed rainfall of this region. And yes, farmers hardly use chemical fertilizers here.  

Here, we will give you a glimpse of Queen and Kew varieties of pineapples. These are grown abundantly in the State of Tripura.

Mid-May to Mid-September is the period wherein you can enjoy the delicious, vitamin C rich varieties of pineapple in this quintessential Northeast state of India.  

About Queen pineapple  

On June7, 2018, President of India Ram Nath Kovind had declared the Queen variety of pineapple as the state fruit of Tripura, citing that this variety connects the state with world trade.  

In 2015, Queen pineapple received the Geographical indication(GI) tag.

So, what’s so special about Queen? 

Fruit of Queen pineapple variety is golden yellow, spiny, and with a sweet aroma. The best time to harvest these fruits is when their eyes turn yellow. This usually happens from mid May to mid July. This is a time when you find a lot of Queen pineapples doing the rounds in the market.  

Average weight of this pineapple is 600-800 grams. The juice is bright yellow. TSS (Total Soluble Solids) of the fruit ranges from 10 to 14 brix, on the basis of the maturity stage and season. Its pH is 4.0 to 4.5. Water content is anything between 80% and 90%.  

Queen pineapple has a unique aroma that makes it different from other pineapple varieties 

About Kew pineapple 

Kew pineapple is spineless and big in size. The fruit weighs between 1.5 kg and 3.0 kg. The fruit is very juicy. TSS is 8 to 12 brix. Juice is light yellow. The fruit is highly aromatic. This variety is best for canning.  

Pineapple harvest trick 

When you harvest pineapples at half-ripe stage, the fruits can be kept fresh for up to 3 weeks when stored at 12-13 degree Celsius. 

Pineapple that never betrays  

The traditional lore of Tripura features an age-old belief, which is still alive. The belief is: “pineapple would never betray us.” People believe that pineapple crop would never betray them, meaning the crop would almost always give them a bumper harvest. And it has been so for decades together.  

Pineapple has proved true to the belief and has been offering a substantial income to farmers every year. Any other crop would fail in an unfavourable condition, but pineapple is a crop that stands by Darwin’s theory, “survival of the fittest.”  

Farmers of Tripura pioneered cultivation of pineapple and the state is abundant of these yellow, juicy fruits that offer a refreshing delight in the hot months.  

source: https://krishijagran.com/

Indian Army Purchases Jharkhand Farmer’s Bumper Watermelon Harvest

Due to the coronavirus-induced lockdown, a 25-year-old Jharkhand farmer was unable to sell his bumper watermelon harvest of 5 tonnes hence he offered the whole of his produce to soldiers of the Sikh Regimental Centre (SRC) at Ramgarh. 

SRC officials, including commandant Brigadier M Sri Kumar, were moved by the gesture of Ranjan Kumar Mahto, a Ranchi University graduate who chose farming as a profession. They visited his farm in the neighboring Bokaro district and purchased the produce. 

The soldiers and their families arrived at Kander, where the 25-acre farm is located. They came in with gifts, supplies, and meal packets for agricultural laborers, and drove the entire 5-tonne harvest to SRC, 15 kilometers away. 

“Seeing drip irrigation on 25 acres of land was encouraging, but the impoverished farmer was unable to sell the produce. We also noticed ladies working. 

Brigadier Kumar, who is also the president of the Ramgarh Cantonment Board, said, “We got to know that he had established the business two years ago but sustained losses because of the COVID-19 pandemic and cyclone Yaas.” 

“However, throughout the lockdown, there were no purchasers. The harvest began to spoil. Nobody in the village was willing to pay even Rs 2 per kilo for it. We sought assistance from a variety of sources, but to no success. “Finally, I made the decision to give the produce away for free to our courageous soldiers and approached the cantonment,” he said. 

Mahto has a workforce of roughly 40 women and has cultivated capsicum, brinjal, and other crops. 

source: https://krishijagran.com/

India And Israel Sign Three-year Work Program To Train Farmers And Modernize Agriculture

Taking forward the ever-growing partnership in agriculture between Israel and India, the two governments have agreed to enhance their cooperation in agriculture and signed a three-year work program agreement.

India and Israel are implementing the “Indo-Israel Agricultural Project Centres of Excellence” and “Indo-Israel Villages of Excellence”.

Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare, Government of India, and Mashav – Israel’s Agency for International Development Cooperation – are leading Israel’s largest G2G cooperation, with 29 operational Centres of Excellence (COEs) across India in 12 States, implementing Advanced-Intensive agriculture farms with Israeli Agro-Technology tailored to local conditions.

The Centres of Excellence generate knowledge, demonstrate best practices and train farmers. Every year, these COEs produce more than 25 million quality vegetable seedlings, around 3.87 lakh quality fruit plants and train more than 1.2 lakh farmers about the latest technology in the field of horticulture.

“The work program will aim to grow existing Centres of Excellence, establish new centers, increase CoE’s value chain, bring the Centres of Excellence into the self-sufficient mode, and encourage private sector companies and collaboration,” the Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare said in a statement.

On the other hand, the “Indo-Israel Villages of Excellence” program is a new concept aimed at creating a model ecosystem in agriculture across eight states, alongside 13 Centers of Excellence within 75 villages.

The program will promote the increase of net income and better the livelihood of the individual farmer, transforming traditional farms into modern-intensive farms based on Indo-Israel Agriculture Action Plan standards.

source: https://swarajyamag.com/