Area under summer crop increased 2.7 times since 2017-18: Tomar


Union Agriculture Minister, Narendra Singh Tomar on Thursday said that area under cultivation of zaid crops (summer crop), including rice, has increased progressively 2.7 times from 29.71 lakh hectares in 2017-18 to 80.46 lakh hectares in 2020-21.

He was at speaking at the National Conference on Agriculture for Summer Campaign 2021-22 where national and state wise targets for pulses, oilseeds and nutri-cereals were set for the summer 2021-22.

Compared to 40.85 lakh hectares under these crops in 2020-21, an area of 52.72 lakh hectares will be covered during 2021-22 in the country.

Pulses will cover 21.05 lakh hectares while 13.78 and 17.89 lakh hectares will be brought under oilseeds and nutri-cereals, respectively. Pulses and oilseeds will be promoted through Targeted Rice Fallow Area sub-component of NFSM and NFSM (OS&OP). These will also be supported as intercrops in sugarcane and oil palm.

“Summer crops not only provide extra income but also create employment opportunities in between Rabi and Kharif for the farmers thereby increasing crop intensity,” Tomar said.

Stating that the government has taken new initiatives through various programmes for cultivation of summer crops such as pulses, coarse cereals, nutri-cereals, and oilseeds, he said: “Though more than half of cultivated area in summer season is under pulses, oilseeds and nutri-cereals, the farmers with irrigation source are growing rice and vegetables during the summer season.”

The Minister assured full support to ensure supply of critical inputs and facilitate adoption of innovative technologies with a view to enhance production and productivity of the crops.

The objective of Zaid conference – held virtually – is to review and assess the crop performance during the preceding crop seasons and fix crop-wise targets for summer season in consultation with the state governments.

In spite of a difficult time due to Covid, the country produced 3,086.47 lakh tonnes of food grains during 2020-21 (4th Advance Estimates), which will be an all-time record. Pulses and oilseed production has also achieved all time high at 257.19 and 361.01 lakh tonnes, respectively. Production of cotton is estimated at 353.84 lakh bales, with which India is set to rise to the first position in the world. On the production and productivity fronts, the horticulture sector has also outperformed conventional food grain crops, the conference was informed.

Minister of State for Agriculture and Farmers Welfare, Kailash Choudhary told the states that special focus is now given to increase production of oilseeds and pulses and make the country self-reliant.

A presentation by Joint Secretary, Crops and Oil Seeds, highlighted the rainfall situation, region wise live storage of water in major reservoirs, season wise estimated area coverage under different crops, trend and area coverage under Zaid/summer, existing support programmes for summer crops and state wise area projected for coverage under Zaid/summer crops 2022.



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