Procurement of chana at minimum support price(MSP) by entities such as NAFED and FCI has crossed the two million tonne mark. Chana procurement stood at 20.41 lakh tonnes on Monday. Maharashtra, so far, tops the list of States withover 6.61 lakh tonnes having been procured, closely followed by Madhya Pradesh at 6.13 lakh tonnes and Gujarat at 5.35 lakh tonnes.

The chana procurement which started a bit late in Madhya Pradesh has picked up and is going on in States like Rajasthan, Maharashtra and Gujarat among others.

Despite the increase in quantity procured, the prices of chana are still ruling below the MSP level of ₹5,230 per quintal. Modal prices of chana are presently ranging between ₹4200-4800 across various markets in the key producing States. “Even after so much of buying, chana prices are not getting the support. That’s mainly due to higher supplies and carry-forward stocks” said Indrajit Paul, Senior Manager, Commodity Research at Origo E-Mandi.

High production

The production of chana is seen higher than initial expectations on better yields in States like Gujarat and Maharashtra. In its third advanced estimates, the Agriculture Ministry has revised the production estimates for chana and pegged it higher at a record 139.8 lakh tonnes, an increase of 17.4 per cent over previous year’s 119.1 lakh tonnes.

“Chana production has increased significantly in Gujarat by 49 per cent at 21.4 lakh tonnes, while in Rajasthan it production increased by 20 per cent to 27.2 lakh tonnes and in Maharashtra it increased by 15 per cent to 27.6 lakh tonnes,” Paul said. The Government has set a procurement target of 8.71 lakh tonnes in Madhya Pradesh, which is likely to be achieved, going by the pace of the procurement, Paul said.

While in Gujarat, the procurement is closer to the targetted level of 5.36 lakh tonnes, in Rajasthan, only 85,000 tonne of the targetted 5.97 lakh tonnes have been procured.

Bearish trend

Trade sources said the overall bearish trend in the pulses segment is also reflecting in the chana prices. With the Government keeping the import window open for pulses like tur and urad till March 2023, the prices of the pulses in general are largely stable when compared with other commodities like wheat and oilseeds.

“The Government has procured substantial amounts of chana and prices are ranging between ₹4,600-4,800 per quintal, while chana dal prices are ₹5,800-6,100 per quintal depending on the quality,” said Suresh Agrawal, President, All India Dal Mills Association in Indore. Agarwal said the demand for pulses is muted on account of availability of cheaper vegetables at present. Going forward the demand could pick up resulting in prices improving, Agarwal said, adding that the arrival and progress of monsoon holds the key to the price movement.