Problem of plenty as grain buffer stocks set to rise

Projections for the country’s foodgrain buffer show that by April1, ’03, another two million tonnes of wheat and rice would be added to the already burgeoning stockpile of 50.9m tonnes as on April 1, ’02. The spurt in wheat exports in the outgoing year will only have a marginal effect on this picture. According to estimates, 42m tonnes are likely to be procured for the central pool during ‘02-03 whereas the likely offtake during the year is expected to be 39.8m tonnes. As a result, the country’s buffer stock will further pile up to 53.1m tonnes by April1, ’03 against the required 15.8 m tonnes.

(Courtesy-The Economic Times, June 29)

Grain output down in three years

Country’s major cash crops, cotton and sugarcane, and foodgrains like wheat and rice have registered a major decline in productivity during the last three years, an analysis carried out by Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry of India said. The analysis of the state-wise yield rate of foodgrains reveals a drastic decline in the production rate of major cotton growing states.

(Courtesy-The Economic Times)

Govt. reverts to selling subsidized foodgrains to exporters

Government has decided to revert to the mechanism of sale of wheat and rice to the traders for export at subsidized rate and will study whether that can be shown as WTO-compatible. The new system of traders paying the open market price and the differential with the ex-granary export price being reimbursed later has been put in abeyance. Official sources said they weren’t sure when the lower rate system would stop but the concern was how best to make the system WTO-compatible.

The government will study whether the current policy was in consonance with WTO regulations or whether any change was needed.

(Courtesy-The Economic Times)

Bumper paddy adds to Bengal farmers’ woes

Farmers in West Bengal have resorted to distress selling of rice stocks following a sharp rise in production coupled with lower demand as well as the government decision to buy less from producers. Farmers’ barns are overflowing and a substantial portion of the 14.4m tonnes (mt) of paddy produced this season is rotting, forcing farmers to sell their stock well below the minimum support price offered by the state government.

(Courtesy-The Economic Times)

Markfed sells wheat

Punjab State Cooperative Supply and Marketing Federation (Markfed) has sold 60,000 tonnes of wheat to global trading firms for $95 a tonne FOB in recent deals, a company official said. He said three cargoes of 20,000 tonnes each, bound for the Middle East and Southeast Asia, are to be delivered in July. India plans to export 15m tonnes of grain in ‘02-03(April-March) to cut its bulging stocks estimated to have reached 75m tonnes.

(Courtesy-The Economic Times)

STEs canalise rice for pvt traders

Tow of the state trading enterprises have exported 2.3 lakh tonnes non-basmati rice but most of it is canalised on behalf of individual exporters and large contracts are yet to directly come their way. “State Trading Corporation (STC) and Project Equipment Corporation (PEC) have exported over 2.3 lakh tonnes rice since March ’01 ranging from 5-25% Brookes at varying prices on behalf of Indian trading houses,” official sources said. Traders have been routing many orders of 10,000-50,000 tonnes through the STEs that charge a nominal commission, they said. However, there has hardly been any direct export by the STEs since these small orders are contracted by private trading houses even before we get wind of it.”

(Courtesy-The Economic Times)

India regains its status as major player in world rice market

India has regained its status as a major player in world rice trade and is currently the most competitive. India is likely to ship 3.5m tonnes this year, according to the forecast made by the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations. Of the total rice trade of 25.2m tonnes in ’02, India is likely to ship around 3.5 tonnes, according to the rice market monitor of the FAO.

(Courtesy-The Economic Times)

Foodgrain offtake from FCI rises

There has been a sobering effect on country’s burgeoning grain stocks with the cumulative offtake of foodgrains from the central pool rising to 303.4 lakh tonnes in ‘01-02 from 179.4 lakh tonnes in the previous financial year. The offtake of rice was 151.2 lakh tonnes while it was 152.2 lakh tonnes in respect of wheat, compared to 102.2 lakh tonnes and 77.3 lakh tonnes respectively in ‘00-01, an official release said.

(Courtesy-The Economic Times)

Cheaper Indian rice gain most in global market

Notwithstanding the arrival of new crop supplies in major exporting countries, international rice prices have been holding steady, mainly on account of expansion of international trade and reduction in stocks. Only exception has been Indian rice whose price weakened by nearly $100 a tonne during the past one year, making it the most competitive in the world market, trade analysts said.

(Courtesy-The Economic Times)

Rice regains status

India has regained its status as a major player in world rice trade, is currently the most competitive, and is likely to ship 33.5m tonnes this year, according to the forecast made by the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) of the United Nations. Of the total rice trade of 25.2m tonnes in ’02, India is likely to ship around 3.5m tonnes and is the most competitive in the market.

(Courtesy-The Economic Times)

State bakeries likely to get wheat at APL price soon

Bakers in Maharashtra may soon be supplied wheat at above poverty line (APL) price against their commitment to reduce the price of daily bread and pav. The state has sought this arrangement for the three-year period of its 3.5 lakh tonne monthly wheat quota for public distribution system. The prevailing APL price is Rs 510 per quintal as against open market rate of Rs 650-670.

(Courtesy-The Economic Times)

Foodgrain policy on cards: Centre

Concerned over overflowing food stocks in various godowns in the country, government told Rajya Sabha that it is finalising grain movement. Food minister, Shanta Kumar expressed satisfaction that the off-take of foodgrains had touched 309 lakh tonnes last year.

(Courtesy-The Economic Times)

Abu Dhabi, Oman to buy 40,000/t of Indian wheat

Indian wheat continues to be in demand in global market with the country bagging yet another order to export 40,000 tonnes to Oman and Abu Dhabi. However prices fetched have come down drastically due to increasing competition among exporters. With increasing number of exporters, competition within the country for getting orders is getting tough.

(Courtesy-The Economic Times)

FCI to store infected wheat separately

For the first time, FCI has decided to separately stack and store wheat it has procured infected by Karnal Bunt. It has also decided to preserve the identity of wheat which is of exceptionally good quality. This will enable exporters to select wheat of uniform quality from FCI godowns and cut down transaction costs. Out of this year’s crop, Haryana’s wheat has been found to be widely infected with Karnal Bunt. Therefore, it will be suitably labelled at the mandi itself and stacked separately from wheat of other states. Similarly, wheat from Madhya Pradesh will be labelled and stored separately because it is of substantially better quality than wheat from other states and fetches a premium. Internationally, Indian grain suffers from a poor image because good quality grain is frequently adulterated. ``Once foreign buyers are assured that India can supply them grain of uniform quality in every consignment, prices are certainly likely to improve. After all, there is nothing inherently inferior about Indian wheat varieties,’’ said a grain exporter.

(Courtesy-The Economic Times)

FCI unlikely to meet 30mt wheat procurement target

The Food Corporation of India (FCI) now barely manage to procure 21 mt wheat - the same as last year - even though the crop is estimated to be a bumper 73.5 mt. In case, the government procures the same or marginally less quantity of wheat than last year, this could eventually lead to a re-think of India’s subsidised grain export strategy. The government had prepared itself to mop up almost 25-30 million tonnes wheat this year due to a better crop and negligible private sector purchase. The main reason for worry, officials say, is the fact that the government has till now procured just 15.5 million tonnes in all and arrivals are fast getting reduced to a trickle. As FCI expects active buying in Punjab and Haryana to last only till May 15, officials believe the government’s total purchase may barely manage to reach last year’s level of 20.6 mt. FCI has sought permission from the government to withdraw from mandis by May 31. With arrivals in Punjab and Haryana slowing down fairly early in the season, food ministry officials are now left wondering whether the production estimate of 73.5 million tonnes wheat is totally reliable.

(Courtesy-The Economic Times)

Indian supplies keep wheat, rice prices firm

Despite a less than 4% share of the world’s cereal trade, India is helping to hold down global rice and wheat prices. Although the global supplies of both wheat and rice are now tightening, there has been no commensurate increase in prices partly because of the quantities being offloaded by India, according to an analysis by the UN’s Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO).

(Courtesy-The Economic Times)

Handling of foodgrains situation criticised

The government has come in for criticism for its handling of the foodgrain situation. A Parliamentary Standing Committee on Food, Civil Supplies and Public Distribution has said that lack of a uniform procurement policy has not only prevented farmers from getting the minimum support price but resulted in distress sales in States such as Bihar, Gujarat, MP, UP and Orrisa.

(Courtesy-The Hindu)

Haryana buys 34 lakh tonnes of wheat so far

The wheat arrival in Haryana’s mandis has touched over 33.7 lakh tonne till April 23. A spokesman of Haryana food and supplies department said that out of the total wheat arrival, 33.7 lakh tonnes has been procured by the six government procuring agencies at the MSP of Rs 620 a quintal while only 861 tonnes had been purchased by the private traders. The food and supplies department had procured 6.4 lakh tonnes of wheat, Hafed 11.9 lakh tonnes, Haryana Agro Industries Corporation 3.6 lakh tonnes, FCI 5.4 lakh tonnes, Haryana Warehousing Corporation 3.2 lakh tonnes and Confed 3.2 lakh tonnes.

(Courtesy : The Economic Times)

Government targets 15m tonnes grain exports

The government plans to export 15m tonnes of grains in the current year to cut its bulging stocks, said Union food minister. The government has been tapping the export market to cut its massive grain stocks, which are estimated to touch 75m tonnes by the end of April.

(Courtesy : The Economic Times)

Haryana fixes grain output at 138 lakh tonnes

Haryana has fixed the annual foodgrain production target at 137.5 lakh tonnes for the year ‘02-03. The government will give emphasis on diversification of crops with special thrust on adoption of cash crops like gram and revival of sunflower. According to Haryana agriculture minister, under the diversification activities, the area under cotton, sugarcane, maize and pulses had been increased considerably. The area under cotton had now been increased from 5.6 lakh hectares to 6.3 lakh hectares where-as under maize 16,000 hectares pulses from 27,000 hectares to 57,000 hectares. The targets for production of sugarcane, cotton and oilseeds have been fixed at nine lakh tonnes, 14 lakh bales and 7.3 tonnes respectively. The state expects a record production of rabi crop of about 102.5 lakh tonnes.

(Courtesy : The Economic Times)

Manila to buy 1 lakh tonne rice from India

The Philippine government decided to buy a total of 245,000 tonnes of rice from India, Pakistan, Vietnam and Thailand. The government said it accepted the offer of India to supply 100,000 tonnes of 15% broken rice at a cash price of $173.70 per tonne cost and freight freeout.

(Courtesy : The Economic Times)

India eyes new markets to reduce huge grain stockpile

India is looking for new markets like Iran, Egypt, Philippines, South Korea, Indonesia and China for its foodgrain to reduce the growing stockpile of 52.9m tonnes in government silos. With quantitative restrictions on grain exports lifted, overseas trade is expected to jump to 15m tonnes- 10m tonnes wheat and five million tonnes rice- and earn foreign exchange worth Rs 12,000 crore. Total grain exports during ‘01-02 are estimated in the region of 7.3m tonnes, including five million tonnes of wheat to 16 countries, placing India seventh among wheat exporting nations, according to the International Grain Council. This year government hopes to achieve a higher target as the money exporters have deposited with the FCI for acquiring wheat is much more.

(Courtesy : The Economic Times)

Rice exports likely to touch 4m this year

Rice exports are expected to increase to around four million tonnes in ’02 helped by lower prices and large orders.

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High-quality subsidised FCI rice being exported at reduced price

Instead of trying to get the highest price possible, state trading companies PEC and STC and several large trading houses, are exporting high-quality but heavily subsidised FCI rice at prices which are $13-15 per tonne lower than the average rates being offered by the wold market for ordinary rice from India. Most of such unusually low-priced contracts have been signed with just three foreign buyers-ADM Rice of USA, Noble Grain of Singapore, and Ascot Commodities of Netherlands.

(Courtesy-The Economic Times)

Foodgrains export sets record

The foodgrains export has touched a record high. During the 2001-02 financial year, 75.62 lakh tonnes of food-grains valued at $742.08 has been exported.

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Record 210m tonnes grain output in '01-02

India's foodgrain production in the year '01-02 is likely to be an all-time high of 210m tonnes

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Government hikes MSP for grains, oilseeds

Government increased the minimum support price (MSP) for wheat by Rs 10 per quintal to Rs 620 from Rs 610 for the marketing season ‘02-03.

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Napalese trade tells India to lift curbs on wheat exports

Nepalese industry asked the Indian government to lift restrictions on wheat exports while seeking removal of local taxes imposed by states.

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Indian rice gets good response in world market

Traders sold 150,000 tonnes of rice to Iran, Iraq, Poland and Malaysia in the past three weeks. A Delhi-based firm sold 30,000 tonnes of 5% broken white rice to Iran at $170 per tonne free on board for April shipment. Other local firms sold a further 60,000 tonnes of the same quality rice to Iran at $165-$170 per tonne.

UP, MP, Rajasthan go ahead with wheat buying

Punjab and Harlan appear to have toppled off the wheat map for country’s private sector as companies decide to focus wholly on UP, MP and Rajasthan for procurement this year.

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Freeze sought on support price of wheat

The Food and Public Distribution Ministry has sought a freeze on the minimum support price(MSP) of rabi wheat 2002-2003 to be procured for the central pool in view of the huge foodgrain stocks lying with the Government.

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Wheat doesn’t find a roof

The government has decided that all the wheat procured from this year’s new crop in April will only be stored in the open as there are virtually no godowns available.

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Asian rice prices set to fall as India enters market

Asian rice prices are expected to fall in the next week as India, faced with bulging grains stocks, sell rice to Africa and Indonesia below Asian offer levels.

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Long winter seen boosting rabi wheat yield by 10 %

prolonged winter being experienced in northern region will be extremely beneficial particularly to the wheat crop and may raise production by 5-10 %.

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Grain output pegged below target

Country’s Foodgrain output this year is estimated to stay put at the ‘99-00 levels of 209.8m tonnes on account of the ensuing rabi production falling short of the target by over seven million tonnes and the prevailing drought in AP & MP. As a result the overall foodgrain output will fall short of the targeted 218 mt by at least nine million tonnes and in the third estimate in April may even be scaled down to 205 million tonnes.

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Drop in wholesale price of wheat

For the first time in several years now, the wholesale price of wheat dropped sharply season, leaving the trade stranded with high-priced stocks and no buyers.

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Millers demanded uniform pricing policy for wheat

Southern States wheat flour Mills Confederation have demanded implementation of a uniform wheat pricing policy, saying the prices of wheat and wheat products in the southern states are the highest in the country.

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Centre authorised State Govt to lift wheat under TDPS

For the coming season, the Centre has authorised State Govt. to lift wheat for Above Povertyline Population (APL) under the targeted Public Distribution System (TPDS) at open market sale rates, which has set at Rs.830 per quintal.

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Sale of 50 lakh tonnes wheat under OMSS

The govt. decided to dispose of 50 lakh tonnes of wheat under open market sale scheme (OMSS) at reduced prices by September even as it admitted that it could sell only a negligible amount so far.

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Kerala unhappy with open market wheat sale

It is suggested that the surplus wheat is to be distributed through the ration shops rather than selling in the open market at Rs.650 a quintal, by Kerala food ministry.

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Country achieved a record of foodgrain production

New Delhi market sources stated that the country has achieved a record foodgrain production of 205.91m tonnes during ‘99-00.

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Decline in world rice trade for ‘00

Monthly forecast for world rice trade had lowered for 2000 to 22.04 million tonnes down 3,00,000 tonnes from its April forecast and down 12% from actual trade in 1999, as released by the US department of Agriculture.

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Reduction in PDS prices of rice and wheat: Govt.

Govt. decided to reduce the prices of rice and wheat sold under the public distribution system.

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Export of surplus wheat stock

Wheat procurement touching 160 lakh tonnes this season, the carrying (storage) cost of the burgeoning stocks runs into nearly Rs.3000 crore per year.

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Downtrend in Non-Basmati rice exports

For the current year, export of non-basmati are expected to decline further, while that of basmati are likely to be maintained.

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Production of foodgrain reached 206 m tonnes

Indian Agricultural Industry states that the foodgrain production touched a record 205.91 m.tons in 1999-2000. There is increase of 2.57 m.tonnes as compared to previous year.

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High domestic prices : Exports of non-basmati rice

Exports of Indian non-basmati rice will lowered down in ‘00-01 ,as domestic prices are gearing up ,despite expectations of a good harvest, as reported by a senior trade official.

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Customs duty on rice importers

In order to lower down the India’s rice import, the Indian govt. has imposed a customs duty of 80% on rice.

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Rice output in ‘00

The UN Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) that the global rice output in 2000 is forecast at 398 million tonnes, which is about one percent less than the record 1999 crop. In its latest Food Outlook report it said that current indications suggested the rice area might contract in some countries, reflecting the effects of govt. policies and/or low international prices relative to alternative crops, as reported from news agencies.

Millers to pay purchase tax on paddy in Haryana

Haryana is India’s largest producer and exporter of basmati,now Haryana has asked all those selling rice to exporters to pay four % purchase tax on paddy with retrospective effect from ’96.

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Sale of lower grade wheat to flour mills: FCI

The Ministry of Public Distribution and Consumer Affaires had allowed open sale of wheat but since the price was raised to Rs. 900/qtl, to match the sale-price of wheat sold to the Above Povertyline Population in PDS.

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8% Sales Tax on REP licences

The Central Sales Tax authorities have directed all Delhi rice exporters to pay 8 % tax with retrospective effect on the special import licences and REP licences, which have sold over the last four years.

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Step to boost export of non - basmati

Haryana rice industry has proposed that union govt. should create a separate category for long grain aromatic rice and should made levy free.

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Basmati prices

According to the Haryana rice industry, currently basmati and other varieties similar to basmati are being sold within the range of $375-750/tonne. Raw basmati is being sold above $600/tonne while parboiled basmati is ruling at around $500/tonne.

Wheat exports

Boosting exports is one of the major thrust of our government to take the advantage of the global economic liberalization.

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Karanataka : Foodgrain target for 00-01

The State government has fixed an ambitious foodgrain production target of 100.08 lakh tonnes for 2000-2001 as against 98 lakh tonnes fixed for 1999-2000.

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Malaysia’s   Rice Imports

 Malaysia’s rice improts will increase slightly in 2000, aided by the country’s economic growth and flat local production, industry sources said.

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China: exporter of rice

China is increasing its rice production and will remain a net exporter after it joins the World Trade Organization. It is forecasted that china will produce 140.75mt of rice in ’05.

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Foodgrain output 212 mt: for ’00-01

Govt. has fixed a foodgrain production target of 212-m tonnes for 00-01 compared to likely achievement of 201.56 mt last year, as reported.

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Wheat market update

Steady to weak conditions were seen on the Delhi grains market on Tuesday. Wheat dara slipped by six rupees at Rs. 632/637 a quintal as daily arrival from UP, and Haryana went up from 17,000 bags to 25,000 bags coupled with slack demand from millers.

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FCI:Wheat Procurement

Under the Open Market Sales Scheme (OMSS) of Food Corporation of India, there are no takers for its offer of wheat. Roller flour millers, from southern India, are believed to have imported around 1.5m tonnes of wheat.

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Marketing trends of pulses

The marketing situation of pulses states that due to fall in arrivals from Maharashtra there is a flaring up of prices of arhar from Rs.1,700/1,800 to Rs.1,800/1,875 a quintal on the Delhi market today.Output of rabi pulses in Rajasthan was reported poor, and due to fall in arrivals from Bihar.Gram MP and Rajasthan shot up from Rs 1,300/1,425 to rs 1,350/1,440 a quintal due to fall in output in Rajasthan.

Rice Export

Rice constitutes bulk of the total foodgrain export basket. Thailand, USA and Vietnam dominate the international trade.

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Foodgrain Production in 2000-01

The production target of foodgrain for the year 2000-01 has been pegged at 210 million tonnes (MT), 2 MT more than the target of the Planning commission.

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Grain production may not reach the expectations

Production of foodgrains is likely to be 201.56 million tonnes against the target of 210 million tonnes during the year 99-00.

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Higher duty on rice protects interest of farmers

Indian government has imposed an 80 percent duty on rice imports with immediate effect to curb the influx of cheap grain.

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Changing market trends of grains and pulses

A mixed market conditions prevailed on the Delhi grains pulses. Common Basmati rice prices improved by Rs.50 at Rs.2,200/3,000 a quintal due to restricted supply from Punjab and Haryana. Demand in Basmati.

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Increase in price of  Kharif crops

The Central government of India has undertaken a decision to increase the support prices of Kharif crops such as Sorghum, Bajra, rice, cotton, and other pulses by Rs. 25 to 145 per quintal.

Now, the minimum support price for rice is Rs. 490 per quintal. Sorghum, Bajra and maize prices are Rs. 415 per quintal. Minimum support price of pulses is increased by Rs 145 per quintal.

High decline in wheat prices

As a result of low demand in market and more import of wheat in Maharashtra and Madhya Pradesh leads to decrease in price level by Rs. 50.

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Decline in price of low quality jowar

As there is more import of low quality of jowar from Maharashtra and Karnataka states, which results in declining prices by Rs.50.

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Market Update
(Food Grains)