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India: Harvest & Post-Harvest Crop Losses in 2021

by | Dec 17, 2021 | News, Specials

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Union Minister of State for Rural Development and Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution said the study — ‘Assessment of Quantitative Harvest and Post-Harvest Losses of Major Crops in India’ – included the assessment of harvest and post-harvest losses of 45 crops and livestock. The produces included cereals, pulses, oilseeds, fruits, vegetables, plantation crops, spices, fish, eggs, poultry meat and milk.

Crops

The losses have been assessed in farm operations such as harvesting, collection, sorting, grading, drying, packaging and transport; and in storage channels such as farm, godown/ cold storage, wholesaler, retailer and processing units. As per the study report, the harvest and post-harvest tosses of cereals ranged from 4.65 percent to 5.99 percent, and for pulses, the losses ranged from 6.36 percent to 8.41 percent. The loss was at 5.53 percent in paddy, 4.93 percent in wheat, and 4.65 percent in maize.

Area 

Over 5 million hectares of agricultural areas were affected due to heavy rains during 2021, according to a written reply in the Lok Sabha by the Union Minister of Agriculture and Farmers’ Welfare Narendra Singh Tomar.

The 50.4 lakh hectare area was affected due to cyclonic storms/flash floods/floods/landslides/cloudburst and others as of November 25, 2021, was from a total of 20 states.

Karnataka was the worst hit, with crop loss on 1.4 million ha area, followed by Rajasthan (679,000 ha), West Bengal (690,000 ha), Bihar (580,000 ha), Maharashtra (455,000 ha). Other states included Tamil Nadu, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Odisha among others, according to the minister.

Rains have wreaked havoc on almost all of these states, which received either ‘large excess’ or ‘excess’ rainfall this year. Karnataka, which has the highest area under crop damage, for example, received 102 percent excess rainfall from October-November, according to data by the Indian Meteorological Department.

Poor Indian farmer working in the field. Destroyed crop fields by flood and heavy rain.

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