The rice procurement by the state-run Food Corporation of India (FCI) has crossed 27 million tonnes in 2009-10 and is three percent lower than last year due to low production.
The FCI, India's nodal agency for procuring and distributing food grain, and the state bodies had procured 27.93 million tonnes of rice in the corresponding period of the previous marketing year, which runs from October to September.
A senior official of the ministry of agriculture said the central government had procured a record 33.68 million tonnes of rice in the 2008-09 marketing year.
“For the 2009-10 marketing year, it kept the procurement target lower than the previous year at 26 million tonnes, in view of lower quantum of rice production in the 2009 kharif season due to drought that hit over 300 districts of the country," he added.
According to the FCI, the state agencies had procured 27.25 million tonnes in the corresponding period last year, totalling a record of 33.68 million tonnes in the entire season for 2008-09.
However, the procurement registered a surplus against the estimation.
The largest rice contributor to the central pool this season has been Punjab, where procurement has increased by about 10 percent to 9.27 million tonnes.
Procurement from Chhattisgarh has also increased by 20 tonnes to 3.06 million tonnes and it increased by 27 percent from Haryana at 1.81 million tonnes while the procurement from Andhra Pradesh, a major contributor, has declined by 20 percent to 4.22 million tonnes.