“Strong recent winds and untimely rains on standing crops have affected crop that has attained maturity in few parts in Uttar Pradesh,” a senior official of Uttar Pradesh Agriculture department said.
Wheat-harvesting has trickled up in the current week in Uttar Pradesh, largest producer of the cereal in India. The official wheat procurement in Punjab and Haryana begins on 1st April.
In UP, the Food Corporation of India is targeting to procure 50 lakh tonnes of wheat for the central procurement compared to 37 lakh tonnes in the previous season. “The wheat sown area has slightly come down from the last year and yield is also not expected to be high this year,” an official of Food Corporation of India said. He said that the normal wheat production in UP is estimated at 35 million tonne. He maintained that around 5500 collection centres have been set up in the state.
In Punjab, largest contributor to central wheat procurement, the light rain has caused water logging in few fields. “There are a few incidents of water logging in fields that were already irrigated,” Punjab director agriculture, Jasbir Singh Bains told ET. He said that the recent rains will not have much adverse effect on overall crop of wheat. He maintained that the light rains will also have beneficial impact on crop in areas affected by aphid locally known as Kala Tela.
Traders in Punjab feel that the procurement may not cross the last year’s figure when the state procured a five-year record 119.8 lakh tonne of wheat for central procurement.
“The crop arrival may get delayed due to recent rains and drop in temperature that has increased moisture,” an official of Haryana Agriculture department said.
In India, the wheat crop has been affected by scanty rains (62 per cent less rainfall than normal in January and February) in states of Himachal Pradesh and Uttrakhand.