Paddy, cotton acreage increases
Sowing of key kharif crops such as paddy and cotton gained momentum as the South-West Monsoon delivered a 12 per cent surplus in the first fortnight of the four-month rainy season across the South and Central parts of the country. Paddy transplantation has picked up with the total acreage surpassing last year’s level for the first time this season. Total area under paddy stood at 6.93 lakh ha (lha) as against 6.87 lha last year. States such as Kerala, Tamil Nadu and Maharasthra among others have reported higher coverage when compared with the corresponding period last year. Paddy transplantation has also gained pace in the north eastern States such as Meghalaya, Nagaland and Assam with the monsoon making progress in the region.
In the first fortnight, two-thirds of the 36 met sub-divisions have reported normal-to-large excess rainfall, while 12 sub-divisions are still facing deficit. Pulses and oilseeds lag As far as pulses acreage is concerned, the total area, so far, is lower than corresponding last year. The acreage under tur/arhar is marginally higher than last year as farmers in Karnataka and Uttar Pradesh prefer this crop. The acreages under urad/blackgram and moong/green gram is down mainly on account of lower coverage in Karnataka and Tamil Nadu. Among the coarse cereals, the acreages under jowar and small millets is on the rise, while the area under bajra, maize and ragi is trailing last year’s levels. Maize sowing has picked up mainly in key producing States such as Karnataka and Punjab.
Oilseeds area is also trailing last year’s levels mainly on account of lower coverage in Gujarat so far, where the monsoon is yet to make its presence felt. Rainfall deficit in Gujarat is currently at 92 per cent. However, in Karnataka and Tamil Nadu, the area under groundnut has picked up. Also in Karnataka, farmers are opting for soyabean over groundnut on account of the better prices last year and is expected to see a gain of over a tenth during the season.
Source : Business Line
Published on: June 20, 2018