Agri Business

Weak demand, pricing hit agri exports in April-December

Vishwanath Kulkarni Bengaluru | Updated on February 18, 2020

Shipments down 13 per cent at $11.64 billion

India’s farm produce exports continued to remain in the red for the first three quarters of the current financial year, despite a late pick-up in shipments of basmati rice.

Total agri shipments were down by 13 per cent in dollar terms at $11.64 billion as compared with $13.35 billion in the same period of the previous year. In rupee terms, the value of shipments for the April-December 2019-20 period stood 11.51per cent lower at ₹81,901 crore (₹92,558 crore in same period last year).

The decline in exports is mainly on account of weak demand for a majority of the products, including non-basmati rice, buffalo meat, guargum, pulses, fresh fruits and vegetables. Also a dip in pricing for several of these commodities contributed to the decline in overall shipments.

Basmati shipments stood at 2.83 million tonnes valued at $2.97 billion for April-December 2019-20 as against 2.86 million tonnes valued at $3.07 billion in same period last year. Average realisations were down marginally at $1,050 per tonne as against $1,075 per tonne in the same period last year. Basmati accounted for 25.58 per cent of total shipments and was the largest product in the APEDA’s farm produce export basket.

Non-basmati rice shipments were down sharply at 3.56 million tonnes as against 5.73 million tonnes in the same period last year. In value terms, non-basmati rice shipments were down 37 per cent at $1.45 billion as against $2.29 billion. Non-basmati accounted for 12.5 per cent of total shipments.

Buffalo meat shipments were lower at 8.9 lakh tonnes in the April-December period as compared to 9.28 lakh tonnes in the corresponding period of the previous year. In value terms, buffalo meat exports stood at $2.51 billion as against $2.27 billion. Buffalo meat accounted for 21.64 per cent of overall shipments.

Shipments of groundnuts were up both in value and volume. Groundnut exports during the April-December period stood at 4.54 lakh tonnes (3.57 lakh tonnes). In value terms, groundnut shipments were up 42 per cent at $489 million ($346 million).

Other major products such as guargum, pulses, fresh vegetables and fruits saw a contraction during the period. Interestingly, processed vegetables registered a marginal increase.

Published on February 18, 2020

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