Centre asks states, UTs and FCI to continue wheat procurement

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A day after imposing a ban on wheat exports, the Centre has asked wheat-producing states and Union Territories to continue procurement till May 31, as well as the Food Corporation of India (FCI) to carry on the process under the central pool.

The government’s decision comes in the wake of requests by state governments/UTs to continue the procurement process. The extended period is expected to benefit farmers.

Meanwhile, the procurement of wheat under central pool is progressing smoothly in Rabi Marketing Season 2022-23, in the states/UTs of Madhya Pradesh, Haryana, Punjab, Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Himachal Pradesh, Jammu and Kashmir, Gujarat, Bihar, and Rajasthan, an official statement said.

The wheat procurement under central pool has been less during ensuing RMS 2022-23 corresponding to previous RMS 2021-22, mainly due to the higher market prices than MSP, wherein farmers have been selling wheat to private traders.

The Central government had, on May 13, decided to restrict export of wheat to rein in high prices of the foodgrain, except in case of irrevocable letters of credit and requests from neighbouring or food-deficit countries.

According to the Ministry of the Consumer Affairs, a quantity of 180 LMT (corresponding purchase of 367 LMT during RMS 2021-22) of wheat has been procured till May 14, benefiting about 16.83 lakh farmers with MSP value of Rs 36,208 crore.

State-wise revised closing date for procurement of wheat during RMS 2022-23 have been issued by the Ministry and under the revised plan, wheat procurement in Punjab, Haryana, Delhi, and J&K will end on May 31, in Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Bihar, Gujarat and Himachal Pradesh on June 15, in Rajasthan on June 10, in Uttarakhand on June 30.

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