The area under summer crops has increased 7 percent to over 6,4 million hectares (mh) until April 22 from nearly 6 mh year-ago, as an early start has helped farmers maintain the lead against last year. However, next fortnight will be crucial to watch as sowing normally ends by then.
According to data released by Union Agriculture Ministry, the area under pulses has reported an increase of 53 per cent to 1,418 mh, thanks mainly to a substantial increase in the coverage of the moong crop. Planting in moong was at 1,047 mh as of April 22 against 0,693 mh during the corresponding period a year ago.
“Summer pulses area need to reach 2,5 mh in next 15 days to make any impact and after that it can be conclusively said that there is real increase in the acreage. Sometimes, farmers plant early if rabi crop harvesting is also early and this year it has happened at many states due to the early onset of summer,” said a pulses processor in Madhya Pradesh.
On the other hand, rice planting was at 2,887 mh, which 5.7 per cent lower than 3,061 mh planted during the corresponding week in 2021. The total area under oilseeds is marginally higher at 1,061 mh from 1,026 mh. But coarse cereals are higher by 64,000 hectares to reach 10.41 lh, so far. Among the coarse cereals, the maize area trails marginally at 0,621 mh from 0,623 mh in the year-ago period.
The country received pre-monsoon rainfall (since March 1) of 42.3 millimeters, which is 29 percent lower than the normal of 60 mm. The cumulative water storage available in 130 reservoirs monitored by Central Water Commission was 36 percent of their combined storage levels of 175,97 billion cubic meters (BCM) as on April 21 against 30 percent considered normal during this period.
Source: The Hindu Business Line