Guntur: India’s chilli output was expected to rise on expanded acreage this year, but lower yield due to unseasonal rains might see it steady at 1.2 million tonnes (mt), traders and exporters said.
Andhra Pradesh, the biggest producer, received rainfall in mid-January and mid-March, damaging crop in some parts.
“Acreage had gone up, but the pest and disease attack in some pockets and rainfall during maturity stage reduced per-hectare yield. The output would be same as much we produced last year,” said A.P.J. Arun, an exporter based in Guntur, Andhra Pradesh.
Official data is not available, but experts estimated 2006-07 production to be about 1.2mt. It was expected to rise 16.7% to 1.4mt for the year to 31 March.
Last week too, the coastal belt of Andhra Pradesh received heavy rainfall, damaging standing crop and affecting harvested crop kept for drying.
The prices here, the biggest spot market for chilli in the country, jumped by Rs328 to Rs4,073 per 100kg on Monday.
“Prices will remain steady at this level for next one month. After that, export demand will dictate the trend,” said Dungarchand Kanungo, a trader. In the first 10 months of 2007-08, exports jumped 50.2% to 157,500 tonnes, compared with 104,885 tonnes in the same period a year ago.