Foodgrain output to fall by 3.5 per cent
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Close on the heels of Central Statistics Office's projection that country will grow at its slowest pace in a decade at a mere 5 per cent in current fiscal, the fresh estimates of agricultural production on Friday indicated that the overall foodgrain output for 2012-13 (July-June) will be down by about 3.5 per cent over the previous year on account of deficient rainfall during the kharif crop this year.
The estimates suggested that the country will harvest 250.14 million tonne of foodgrain this year as against record 259.32 million tonne produced last year.
"We had produced about 260 million tonne foodgrain last year. This year, we have crossed 250 million tonne irrespective of drought in some districts of Maharashtra, Gujarat, Rajasthan and parts of Karnataka," Agriculture Minister Sharad Pawar said at a conference organised by the National Seed Association here.
Though most of the major crops, except pulses, are likely to witness a fall compared to production last year, the bulk of the shortfall is accounted by the lower production of paddy and coarse cereals.
According to the second advanced estimates released by the Agriculture Ministry, rice output this year is estimated at 101.8 million tonne as against record output of 105.31 million tonne last year, registering a decline of about 3.3 per cent.
Likewise, the coarse cereals output is likely to dip by about 8.5 per cent at 38.47 million tonne this year as against 42.04 million tonne last year.
While the wheat output is also estimated to be down marginally at 92.3 million tonne as against 94.88 million tonne last year, the pulses output this year is projected to be marginally up at 17.58 million tonne as against 17.09 million tonne last year. Oilseeds output this year is estimated at 29.46 million tonne which is marginally down from 29.79 million tonne produced last year.
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