The Centre has agreed to procure 8 lakh tonnes (lt) of fortified parboiled rice from Telangana. This is over and above the 6 lt that it agreed to buy from the State.
After a tussle early this year, the Centre said it will not procure parboiled rice produced in the State during the rabi season. It said it will procure only white (raw) rice, which the State feels might cause losses as the paddy-to-rice conversion in rabi is poor as the grains break.
The issue became complicated as two weeks of continuous rains and floods damaged paddy stocks stored in mills across the State. Worried over the prospect of losing about 5 lt of paddy that got soaked in water, the State Government approached the Centre, enquiring if it can supply fortified parboiled rice to the Food Corporation of India (FCI).
Responding to the request made by the State on July 30, the Ministry of Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution, wrote to the Telangana’s Civil Supplies Commissioner, agreeing to procure an additional 8 lakh tonnes of fortified parboiled rice.
The Centre would augment the supplies to its flagship scheme that intends to supply fortified rice (rice added with iron, folic acid and Vitamain B12) through the public distribution system.
Launched late last year, the scheme is being rolled out in phases in different parts of the country.