Tuesday, 30 June 2015

Pulses | Production, Yield, MSP

Why in news?
  • In his Mann Ki Baat address on Sunday, Mr. Modi had asked farmers to increase the production of pulses so that India no longer needed to import them.
    • 20% of the country’s supply of pulses is imported
Why farmers prefer to grow cereals rather than pulses?
  • Pulses are among the least productive of all crops — 
    • the yields are on average 760 kg per hectare, compared to 2,400 kg per hectare for cereals, and 1,100 kg per hectare for oilseeds.
  • Relatively more lucrative MSP for other food grains makes pulses an unattractive crop for farmers.
Why the YIELD of pulses is low?
The reason behind this low yield in pulses — which has barely changed in more than three decades — is that 
  • Pulses are technology-proof crops 
  • As farmers found that they were getting more out of growing cereals, pulses increasingly became marginal crops grown on marginal [less fertile] land. 


What is the impact of low preference and yield of pulses?

  • High dependence on imports - affecting our CAD
  • Low yield levels and a significant dependence on imports have meant that the prices of pulses have risen sharply
    • The CPI in pulses, at 7.9 per cent in 2014-15, was higher than the overall food inflation of 6.2 per cent.
    • In fact, proteins, fruits and vegetables have been the main drivers of food inflation since around year 2000, as opposed to cereals and sugar, which were the main drivers in the previous four decades.
[Sources: The Hindu, PIB]

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