New Delhi: Erratic global production of pulses and shortfall of three quarter of a million tonnes between availability and demand could according to industry chamber, Assocham lead to see pulses going the onion way in the way prices are soaring.
Expected to increase by 15-20% during the upcoming festive season, if adequate safeguards are not taken, prices of rice are likely to rise by another 10-15%, in view of non-basmati’s exports continuation to countries in the African continent and to neighbouring countries.
Owing to demand of over 20 million tonnes of pulses and domestic production not exceeding 13 million tonnes, a further escalation in pulses prices by 15-20% may be seen within the next month.
* India is the world’s largest importer of pulses and yet it has to rely upon imports due to explosive growth in population. The country meets its domestic needs primarily through imports from USA, Canada, Australia, Myanmar, Turkey, Tanzania and Canada.
* Variety-wise major pulse crop growing States in India are Gram – MP, Rajasthan, UP and Haryaana, Masoor – MP, UP, Bihar, Arhar (rabi) – MP, UP, Bihar, Arhar (kharif) – Maharashtra, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Haryana, Gujarat,l Urad (kharif) – Rajasthan, Maharashtra, Andhra, Karnataka, Bihar, Tamil Nadu, UP and others (rabi/kharif), Maharashtra, Andhra, Rajasthan, UP, MP and Bihar.
* Percentage change in India’s exports of pulses to major countries during 2005-06 over 2004-05 have been Bangladesh 89.32, Sri Lanka 29.21, Pakistan 263.13, UAE 41.88, USA 38.95, Nepal 49.28, Sudan 520.84, Algeria 156.84, Saudi Arabia 42.58, Egypt 273.33, Kuwait 31.61, UK 25.73, Malaysia 39.05, Spain 102.46, Italy 110.36 and Canada 37.20
* Pulses which are currently sold off at retail prices within the bracket of Rs35-45 per kg are likely to be disposed off at forecast bracket of between Rs45-55 per kg price bracket as a shortage of almost 1 million tonne is being experienced for the last few weeks which will further go up.
* If non-basmati rice exports are not partially banned in countries in the African continent and India’s neighbourhood, rice price would witness a hike of between 10-15%, taking common man under heavy price burden, implications of which will be reflected on other eatable products.
* Pulses imports are growing costlier as world’s pulses production has been showing no signs of improvement and domestic pulses production also is not increasing and a staggering 13 million tonne p.aas against requirement of nearly 20 million MT.
* As a short term measure, India could import substantial quantity of pulses from Pakistan where demand is less
* Bring in higher acreage for growing pulses so that production multiplies and there is little shortage on supplies to contain price rise
* Second green revolution may be necessary to produce high yield variety of pulses to enhance annual production and meet growing demand/ contain rising prices