New Delhi: Government has so far sold 1.8 million tonnes of wheat to bulk buyers such as floor millers and traders under the Open Market Sale Scheme (OMSS).
From July onwards, government started selling wheat stock held in the Food Corporation of India (FCI) through weekly tenders to bulk buyers. It aims to sell a total of 8.5 million tonnes of wheat by end of March, 2014 at base price of Rs 1,500 per quintal plus the freight depending on the location.
"Under the OMSS, about 1.8 million tonnes of wheat has been sold to bulk traders," a Food Ministry official said.
The response to the tenders has been good so far. Much of the foodgrain has been sold in Delhi, Punjab and Haryana, he said, adding that more quantity needs to be sold to clear space for the new crop to be harvested from April onwards.
Besides creating space, experts said offloading the FCI wheat stock under the OMSS to bulk buyers is helping contain price rise in wheat, which have firmed up as private traders purchased wheat directly from farmers last year.
As on December 1, FCI had wheat stock of 31 million tonnes, much higher than the actual requirement. The country's wheat production stood at 92.46 million tonnes in 2012-13.
Currently, wheat sowing of the 2013-14 crop year (July-June) is underway. Farmers have sown wheat in 21.40 million hectare so far, higher than 18.34 million hectare in the same period last year.
First Published: Tuesday, December 10, 2013, 14:24