Castor output for 2020-21 seen a tad down at 19 lt

Castor output for 2020-21 seen a tad down at 19 lt

India’s castor seed crop is expected to be marginally lower at 19.02 lakh tonnes (lt) for the year 2020-21 against 19.52 lt recorded in the previous year, a crop survey presented today informed.

Agri research agency Agriwatch, which conducted the crop survey, has projected a 15 per cent drop in the overall acreage but hopes that the fall in the cultivation area will be offset by the 14.8 per cent higher yield, to peg the overall crop size near last-year’s numbers.

All-India sowing is projected at 8,26,120 ha (9,73,190 ha). The yield, according to Agriwatch, will be higher at 2,303 kg/ha against last year’s 2,006 kg/ha. “The monsoon in the castor growing regions was more than normal which created better prospects for a higher yield,” said Santosh Jhanwar, Vice-President-Consulting, Indian Agribusiness Systems Limited.

State-wise acreage

The largest castor-growing region in the country, Gujarat and Saurashtra-Kutch, received rains in excess of 12 per cent and 126 per cent, respectively. Also, West Rajasthan, Telangana and Rayalaseema in Andhra Pradesh witnessed excess rainfall of 25 per cent, 46 per cent and 84 per cent, respectively.

Output in Andhra Pradesh and Telangana is projected to be lower on 34 per cent dip in acreage. The crop area is estimated at 38,220 ha (58,240 ha). Yield is expected to be marginally lower at 589 kg/ha against last year’s 593 kg/ha.

In Rajasthan, castor area has fallen by 19 per cent to 1,25,700 ha. However, the yield is expected to increase by 17 per cent to 1,876 kg/ha. The survey projects crop in Rajasthan to be 4 per cent lower at 2,35,800 tonnes.

The crop in Gujarat is expected to be 16,29,000 tonnes (16,59,300 tonnes), while the acreage is projected at 6,38,000 ha (7,40,600 ha). The yield, however, is projected to be higher by 13 per cent to 2,533 kg/ha.

Trade disagrees

However, the trade has expressed surprise at the crop numbers from the survey commissioned by the Solvent Extractors’ Association of India (SEA).

Deepak Thakkar of Gokul Agro Resources said, “Based on the farm reports, we feel that the actual crop may hover around 15-16 lakh tonnes for the year.” Echoing similar sentiment, Achavaphol Chabchitrchaidol of Thai Castor Oil Industry, said, “The crop should have been 10 per cent lower than last year.”

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