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India: Wheat procurement to touch 32 million tonnes in 2012-13

Wednesday, 22 February 2012 | 12:35
Wheat procurement by the Government for the Rabi marketing season 2012-13 is expected to rise by over 12.5 per cent to a record 31.89 million tonnes (mt). Last year, the Government had procured 28.34 mt for subsidised sales under the public distribution system.
The procurement in majority of States such as Punjab, Uttar Pradesh, Haryana and Rajasthan will begin from April 1 and continue till June 30. In States such as Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh and Gujarat the procurement will start from March 15. Bihar and Jammu & Kashmir are likely to begin procurement from April 15.
The Union Food Secretary, Dr B.C.Gupta, reviewed the State-wise procurement strategy with the Food Secretaries of some 13 wheat procuring states on Tuesday. Madhya Pradesh has indicated a record estimate of 6.5 mt for 2012-13, according to the Food Ministry statement. The Government has announced a minimum support price of Rs 1,285 a quintal for wheat this year.
The procurement strategy assumes significance as the country is poised for an all time record harvest of wheat exceeding 88.31 mt. In 2011-12, India harvested a record 86.87 mt of wheat.
Purchase centres
The arrangements discussed at Tuesday's meeting include among others, the number of purchase centres to be opened in each State, the route for MSP payment through account payee cheques or bank transfers direct to the farmers, quality control measures, storage and movement of food grains. The States have assured that they are fully gear up to make record procurement this time and they are in process of setting up control room to monitor it, the statement said.
Meanwhile, the Union Agriculture Minister, Mr Sharad Pawar, has stated that the co-operatives have a distinct role in post-harvest management and storage. He was speaking at the 72nd General Council meeting of the National Co-operative Development Corporation (NCDC). Mr Pawar said NCDC has been appointed as an agency for accreditation of warehouses by the Warehouse Development and Regulatory Authority.
Source: The Hindu Business Line
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