India’s wheat production likely to touch all-time high of 112 million tonnes
A bumper wheat crop season is expected this year due to the ongoing weather conditions as there is a strong possibility of a longer winter spell, especially in the northern wheat growing belts of the country
India’s wheat production may set a new record this rabi season and surpass 112 million tonnes due various factors such as favourable weather conditions and increase of around 1.5 million hectares in the wheat acreage across the country, including in the agriculture -dominated states of Punjab and Haryana, the scientists of the ICAR-Indian Institute of Wheat and Barley Research (IIWBR) in Karnal have predicted.
Last year, the scientists had predicted that the wheat output may touch 112 million tonnes but inclement weather and early heatwave in March had affected both early and late varieties, resulting in yellowing and shrivelling of wheat grain in northern states of the country.
The overall production of wheat reached 106.84 million tonnes, reporting a dip of 2.75 million tonnes as compared to 109.59 million tonnes estimated during the 2020-21 season, revealed the Fourth Advance Estimates of Production of Foodgrains for 2021-22 released by the Union ministry of agriculture and farmers welfare.
“As per our estimates and experiences, we are hopeful that the country’s wheat production may reach an all-time high this year and go beyond 112 MT,” said Gyanendra Singh, IIWBR director.
Answering a query on the key factors that could be behind the rise in the produce, he said that this year, the country has witnessed an increase of around 1.5 million hectares in the wheat acreage, which is likely to reach 31.5 million hectares against 30 million hectares of the last year.
Besides, a bumper wheat crop season is expected this year due to the ongoing weather conditions as there is a strong possibility of a longer winter spell, especially in the northern wheat growing belts of the country.
“Another reason for better yield and produce is the increase in the seed proportion of the new high yielding climate resilient varieties developed by the IIWBR,” he said, adding that the area under wheat in Punjab and Haryana is also likely to increase this year.
On the bad weather impact on wheat in Punjab and Haryana last year, he said that due to high temperature, the grain moisture in the grains reduced to around 8-9% from the normal 12-14% which directly led to a fall in the overall production. But this resulted in a better-quality harvest of wheat because of proper drying of the grain, he added.
However, the scientists of the IIWBR have also advised the farmers that the ongoing weather conditions are also favourable for the spread of Yellow Rust- a major wheat rust disease and they need to take proper care to protect their crop, especially those farmers who are cultivating old varieties of wheat.