Wheat procurement has been extended to May 31 in six states, including Uttar Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh, where it was scheduled to end earlier this month, the food ministry said on Sunday.
Wheat collection was scheduled to end on May 10 in Rajasthan and May 15 in Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Bihar, Gujarat and Himachal Pradesh.
Wheat procurement in the current 2022-23 marketing year began in April. Most wheat is collected in the first few months of the year.
The Ministry of Food said in a statement that the Center has asked the wheat producing states and Union Territories to continue procurement till May 31, 2022.
The nodal agency Food Corporation of India (FCI) has been asked to continue collecting wheat under the central pool, it said.
The extended term is expected to benefit farmers. The decision came in response to a request from the state government / UT to continue the procurement process, it added.
Meanwhile, wheat collection under the Central Pool is in full swing in the states of Madhya Pradesh, Haryana, Punjab, Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Himachal Pradesh, Jammu and Kashmir, Gujarat, Bihar and Rajasthan.
The ministry further said that government procurement has declined so far this year mainly due to higher market prices than MSP, where farmers are selling wheat to private traders.
The government restricted wheat exports on 13 May to curb high wheat prices without the indebtedness and requests of neighboring / food-deficient countries.
As of May 14 of the current 2022-23 marketing year, the government’s wheat procurement has reached 18 million tonnes, down 36.7 million tonnes from a year earlier.
This year’s wheat procurement target has been revised from the previous target of 44.4 million tonnes to 19.5 million tonnes.