Indian farmers expect to harvest record wheat, rice crops this year

·2-min read
Workers remove dust from wheat at a wholesale grain market in Chandigarh

By Mayank Bhardwaj

NEW DELHI (Reuters) - India is expected to produce a record 108.75 million tonnes of wheat this year, the farm ministry said in its third forecast for the crop year to June 2021, marginally lower than its previous estimate of 109.24 million tonnes.

Rice output in the world's biggest exporter and the second largest producer is estimated at a record 121.46 million tonnes compared to a forecast of 120.32 million tonnes in February.

The farm ministry forecast this year's total grains output to be at a record 305.44 million tonnes, up from its previous estimate of 297.5 million tonnes.

The efforts of India's farmers, scientists and the government has paid off, said Agriculture & Farmers Welfare Minister Narendra Singh Tomar.

The government had lowered its oilseed output estimate to 36.57 million tonnes from 37.31 million tonnes forecast in February.

Rapeseed production is estimated to be at 9.99 million tonnes this year, down from the previous forecast of 10.43 million tonnes, the farm ministry said. Similarly, soybean output is expected to be at 13.41 million tonnes, lower than the 13.71 million tonnes estimated in February.

The farm ministry pegged peanut production to be at 10.12 million tonnes in 2020/21, lower than its earlier estimate of 10.15 million tonnes.

Production of pulse is likely to be at 25.56 million tonnes this year, up from the 24.42 million tonnes estimated earlier.

Sugarcane production is estimated to be around 392.80 million tonnes against 397.66 million tonnes forecast in February, the farm ministry said.

It added that cotton output is expected to be marginally higher at 36.49 million bales of 180 kg each from 36.54 million bales estimated earlier.

The farm ministry said farmers are likely to harvest a record 30.24 million tonnes of corn against 30.16 million tonnes forecast earlier.

(Reporting by Mayank Bhardwaj; Editing by Amy Caren Daniel)