New Delhi: India is looking to raise wheat output by 11 percent over the next four years to touch 80 million tonnes, and step up production of rice, pulses and oilseeds, a senior government official said on Tuesday.
The government wants to boost rice production to 101 million tonnes annually by 2011, from around 90 million tonnes now, as part of efforts to raise production of major food items and reduce the need for costly imports.
In an interview with Reuters, Agriculture Commissioner N.B. Singh said India aimed to increase oilseed production to 35 million tonnes and pulses output to 15 million tonnes by 2011.
“We will come out with a detailed paper within a week to launch a programme to raise production and productivity of major food crops in the next four years,” he said.
Singh said a country of India’s size, with more than a billion people, could not afford to import large amounts of food, and should strive to become self-sufficient.