Agri Business

Mustard, masur see highest increase in Rabi support price

Our Bureaus New Delhi/Bengaluru | Updated on September 08, 2021

Wheat MSP hiked by ₹40 per quintal

The Union Cabinet on Wednesday approved an increase in minimum support prices (MSP) for Rabi crops for the 2022-23 marketing season with hikes ranging from 2 per cent to 8.6 per cent for various crops. MSP is the rate at which the government buys produce from farmers.

For wheat, the main cereal crop for the season, the MSP has been increased by 2 per cent or ₹40 to ₹2,015 per quintal. For gram or chana, the main pulses crop, the increase is 2.6 per cent or ₹130 at ₹5,230.

The highest absolute increase in MSP over previous year is for lentil (masur) and rapeseed-mustard at ₹400 per quintal each. Masur MSP has been fixed at ₹5,500 per quintal, while rapeseed mustard has been fixed at ₹5,050.

For safflower, a minor oilseed grown during the season, there has been an increase of ₹114 per quintal at ₹5,441.

Production cost

This MSP increase aims to ensure remunerative prices to the growers for their produce, the government said in a statement.

“The differential remuneration is aimed at encouraging crop diversification,” it said. The present decision is in the 2018-19 Budget announcement which provided for fixing the MSPs at a level of at least 1.5 times of the all-India weighted average cost of production.

The expected returns to farmers over their cost of production are estimated to be highest in case of wheat and rapeseed and mustard (100 per cent each), followed by lentil (79 per cent), gram (74 per cent), barley (60 per cent) and safflower (50 per cent).

“Concerted efforts were made over the last few years to realign the MSPs in favour of oilseeds, pulses and coarse cereals to encourage farmers to shift to larger area under these crops and adopt best technologies and farm practices, to correct demand-supply imbalance,” the statement said.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi in a tweet said the MSP increase will ensure maximum remunerative price for the Annadataas and encourage them to sow a wide variety of crops.

The government expects that along with higher MSP, National Mission on Edible Oils-Oil Palm (NMEO-OP), will help in increasing the domestic production of edible oils and reduce imports dependency.

Mixed reactions

The MSP announcement has evoked mixed reactions from stakeholders. “We welcome the Government’s move to encourage crop diversification by providing higher MSP to oilseeds and pulses,” said Badri Narayan Choudhary, General Secretary of Bharatiya Kisan Sangh. This will help rice and wheat producing farmers to divert to oilseeds and pulses.

However, Chaudhary clarified that BKS’ demand for a long-term policy on MSP still stands. The farmers’ body has been demanding that a law be enacted to guarantee remunerative prices to all farmers.

Devinder Sharma, a food policy analyst, said, “the two per cent increase in wheat MSP doesn’t even match the inflation rate. The inflation in rural areas is 5.5 per cent”.

Sharma further said farmers are demanding that they be given a price, which covers the production cost and obviously inflation included.

“If the intent is to diversify the cropping pattern from wheat and paddy, the effort should be on giving farmers an incentive which is equal to what is good for other crops, economically viable and a system for procurement as in the case of wheat and paddy,” Sharma said.

Published on September 08, 2021

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