New Delhi: The government on Thursday increased this year's minimum support price (MSP) for copra by Rs 150 per quintal for both the crop varieties.
The decision was taken by the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) here. The hike is lower than that was sought by the Agriculture Ministry.
Last year, MSP of milling copra was Rs 5,100 a quintal and ball copra, Rs 5,350 a quintal.
"Copra MSP has been raised by Rs 150 per quintal for both the varieties," Food Minister K V Thomas said.
The MSP for milling copra would now be Rs 5,250/quintal, while support price of ball copra stands increased to Rs 5,500 per quintal.
The Agriculture Ministry had proposed a hike of Rs 250 per quintal in the MSP of ball copra, and Rs 200 per quintal in milling copra.
The Ministry had proposed hike in the copra MSP despite the Commission for Agricultural Costs and Prices (CACP) recommendation to the government to keep it unchanged this year in view of stagnant acreage and sluggish prices.
CACP is a statutory body that advises the government on pricing policy for major farm produce.
In the CCEA note, the Agriculture Ministry had also proposed that the National Agricultural Cooperative Marketing Federation of India Ltd (NAFED) continue its price support operations of copra in 2013 season.
The area under the crop is little over 19 lakh hectares, while the production is around 14,745 million nuts.
Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka are major coconut producing states in the country.
The crop is also grown in Assam, Maharashtra, Odisha, West Bengal, Goa, Andaman & Nicobar Islands, Lakshadweep and Puducherry.