Rice procurementAs per sources, it has been reported that the government’s rice procurement has increased by over 21% to 28.41 million tonnes (mt) so far in the 2015-16 marketing year despite prospects of lower production due to poor monsoon. The Food Corporation of India (FCI) and state government-owned agencies undertake procurement operations at the minimum support price. The Centre has kept rice procurement target of 30 million tonnes for the current marketing year, which started in October.

Further, as per the data of food ministry is concerned, these agencies have procured 28.41 mt of rice so far this year as against 23.42 mt in the year-ago period. The procurement from states like Odisha, Chhattisgarh and Uttar Pradesh has increased significantly. While, the rice procurement from Punjab has increased to 9.35 mt from 7.78 mt and the purchase from Haryana has risen to 2.86 mt from 2.01 mt. The procurement in these two states is over now.

However, in this regard, the data of procurement of rice among other states has showed that rice purchase in Chhattisgarh has increased to 3.97 mt so far this marketing year, from 3.35 mt in the year-ago period. The purchase of rice has gone up in Andhra Pradesh to 2.71 mt from 1.54 mt while the procurement in Uttar Pradesh has grown to 2.70 mt from 1.42 mt in the said period. In Odisha too, rice purchase rose to 2.04 mt so far this marketing year as against 1.94 mt a year ago. However, the purchase in Telangana was down at 1.01 mt as against 1.54 mt in the said period, as the data recorded. But, the government expects overall rice procurement to exceed last year’s level of 32 mt.

Furthermore, in the second estimate of the agriculture ministry, the rice production is estimated to decline to 103.61 mt in 2015-16 crop years (July-June), from 105.48 mt during 2014-15, due to the poor monsoon. The agencies buy paddy from farmers and hand it over to millers forShanti Agro Industries Pvt. Ltd. conversion into rice. The government has fixed the minimum support price of common variety of paddy at Rs 1,410 per quintal for 2015-16 kharif seasons.