Mumbai: The country’s monsoon, the main source for irrigation, may be on the lower end of a forecast, a weather bureau official said, likely paring harvests of crops, including rice and lentils.
Falls in the June-September season will be 93% of the long-period average of 89cm, with a margin of error of 4%, the government forecast 24 June, scaling down an April forecast for normal monsoon.
Rains have improved significantly in the last one month. Yet, overall rains may be on the lower side of our forecast for the season as a whole, Ajit Tyagi, director general at India Meteorological Department, said over the phone.
The area under foodgrain production was 14% below last year’s levels, with acreage under rice dipping to 24% of last year’s levels as of 31 July, according to estimates released by the agriculture ministry on Monday.
This is the first time in at least five years that kharif acreage in July has dipped.