New Delhi, Dec 30: The government has procured 238.8 lakh tonnes of rice in the current 2018-19 marketing season so far, with the buying in Punjab and Haryana almost over, according to official data.
Rice procurement target for the current season (October-September) has been fixed at 375 lakh tonnes. In the previous year, total rice procurement stood at 381.8 lakh tonnes.
Procurement is undertaken by state-run Food Corporation of India (FCI) and state agencies for the central pool to meet the requirement of food security law. Rice is purchased at the minimum support price (MSP).
According to FCI data, rice procurement has reached 113.3 lakh tonnes in Punjab, 39.09 lakh tonnes in Haryana and 22.42 lakh tonnes in Chhattisgarh so far.
Rice procurement has touched 22.46 lakh tonnes in Telangana, 13.28 lakh tonnes in Uttar Pradesh and 10.7 lakh tonnes in Andhra Pradesh so far, the data showed.
A Food Ministry official said the procurement operation in Punjab and Haryana is almost complete.
The buying in Chhattisgarh, where farmers had stopped selling their produce in anticipation of a hike in MSP, has resumed after the new government in the state implemented its poll promise.
The rice purchase in eastern states such as Bihar and West Bengal normally starts from January.
At present, the government is procuring rice grown in the kharif season of this year.
Rice output is pegged at 99.24 million tonnes during the 2018-19 kharif season, as against 97.50 million tonnes in the year-ago period, as per the Agriculture Ministry’s first crop estimate.