MP witnesses lower wheat output for 3 years in row
Madhya Pradesh, the claimant of higher agricultural growth in the last decade, has witnessed a regular decline in wheat production in the state over the last three years. Wheat production the state is seen down from 371.98 lakh tonnes (lt) in 2020 to 349.23 lt now.
According to state government statistics, Madhya Pradesh has turned out to be the one of the largest wheat producing states in the country by surpassing Punjab and Haryana a few years ago. Wheat production in the state, during the last three season, remained 371.98 lt, in 2019-2020, 356.69 lt in 2020-21 and 349.23 lt in 2021-22. This denotes a drop of 22.75 lt of wheat.
Simultaneously, the procurement of wheat compared to the past three years has also come down. In the year 2021-22, the wheat procurement remained 128.15 lt, while in 2022-23 the wheat procurement stood at 46.03 lt and the year 2023-24 saw 70.97 lt wheat procured. The data states in the year 2023-24, 24.94 lt of wheat was procured more when compared to the previous year, but it was less when compared to the year 2021-22.
Explaining the reasons for the declining in procurement volumes, the government stated that depending on the market price and production, the wheat is procured on minimum support price (MSP) only. Regarding decline in wheat production in the state, experts opined better irrigation facilities have led farmers to shift on paddy and other cash crops.
The former agriculture director G S Kaushal also opined that moving towards paddy from wheat reduces the risk factor. It could be a reason for farmers moving towards paddy.