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Keeping my fingers crossed on prices of pulses, oilseeds: Pawar

Last Updated: Tuesday, July 17, 2012 - 22:49

New Delhi: Agriculture Minister Sharad Pawar Tuesday said rice and wheat situation is comfortable and he is keeping his fingers crossed on the pulses and oilseeds front.

"Rice and wheat situation is comfortable because of good stock. On pulses and oilseeds, I am keeping my fingers crossed," Pawar told reporters here when asked about the possible price rise in farm commodities due to poor monsoon.

The overall food inflation rose to 10.81 percent in June 2012, from 10.74 percent in May. In June last year, inflation rate in this category was 7.6 percent.

In food articles category, rice turned expensive by 6.70 percent, wheat 7.46 percent, pulses 6.82 percent and vegetables by 20.48 in June on an annual basis.

On month-on-month basis, poultry chicken prices were up by 7 percent, gram 6 percent, masur 4 percent, and fruits & vegetables, egg, arhar, rice by 2 percent each. Tea, milk, wheat and mutton were up 1 percent each.

As per market analysts, edible oil prices have been rising on account of dry weather in the US as well as reducing global supplies, while the rate of pulses are up due to less- than-expected rains in the country and rising demand.

The retail prices of cooking oil are also under pressure due to rupee depreciation as country imports more than 50 percent of its domestic demand. At present, soyabean oil is being sold at Rs 85 per litre in the retail market, while mustard oil is over Rs 100 per litre.

According to the recently released fourth advance estimates by the Agriculture Ministry, oilseed production in the country is pegged to decline by to 30.01 million tonnes in 2011-12 crop year (July-June), as against 32.47 million tonnes produced in the previous crop year.

Similarly, pulses output though up by nearly 2 lakh tonnes to 17.21 MT in 2011-12, remains lower than 18.24 MT achieved in the 2010-11 crop year.


First Published: Tuesday, July 17, 2012 - 22:49
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