Kharif crop condition good; production expected to be bumper: Agri Minister

The condition of Kharif (summer-sown) crops is good and the country is likely to have bumper production of foodgrains, Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar said on Thursday.

 

The crop condition of Kharif crops is good and production will be good, the Minister said on the sidelines of global micro-nutrient summit here, jointly organised by International Zinc Association (IZA) and Fertilizer Association of India (FAI). With better monsoon rains in August, the sowing area of Kharif crops has improved significantly.

 

As on August 30, rice area stood at 354.84 lakh hectare as against 372.42 lakh hectares in the year-ago period. Pulses acreage was down at 127.99 lakh hectares against 131.54 lakh hectares, while area under coarse cereals was flat at 171.74 lakh hectares. Oilseeds acreage was marginally lower at 170.78 lakh hectares compared to 171.15 lakh hectares.

 

Area under cotton was higher at 124.9 lakh hectares as against 117.66 lakh hectares. Earlier addressing the event, Tomar asked farmers to check soil health of their agriculture field before sowing operations in order to ensure balance use of fertilisers. He expressed concern over excessive use of chemical fertilisers and pesticides.

 

We have distributed soil health cards to 12 crore farmers on a priority basis and mission mode. But, farmers should go for soil health check before sowing operations, he said, adding that there was a need for awareness campaign to educate farmers.