Buoyed by a higher forecast for wheat output, the government has announced an ambitious foodgrain production target of 220 million tonnes for 2007-08, 4.3% more than this year’s estimate.
The total foodgrain output for 2006-07 crop year (July-June) is estimated to rise by 1.5% at 211.78mt compared with 208.6mt in 2005-06.
“We are targeting to increase the foodgrain production to 220mt in 2007-08,” agriculture secretary P.K. Mishra said, adding that while wheat output target for 2007-08 has been set at 74.5mt, rice production target is 94mt.
According to third advanced estimates for 2006-07, rabi production was likely to be 103.42mt, 4.8% higher than the previous year. Kharif output, however, is slated to decline by 1.4% at 108.36mt, Mishra said.
Good weather conditions and increased acreage boosted wheat output, with government estimating a 6.3% jump in wheat production this year to 73.7mt. Rising wheat prices has contributed to the surge in inflation that stood at 6.46% during the week ended 17 March.
Releasing the third advance estimates of production of foodgrains, oilseeds and other commercial crops for 2006-07, Mishra said: “Area under wheat has increased and production is estimated to touch 73.7mt.”
He said wheat production is also estimated to go up due to favourable weather conditions and improved farm practises. Wheat output stood at 69.35mt in 2005-06. Favourable conditions have enabled the government to revise upwards its output projection of 72.5mt made in second advance estimates released in February.