The Andhra Pradesh State Civil Supplies Corporation is gearing up to procure paddy being harvested in the rabi season. The procurement will commence from April 1.
The government is expecting a bumper yield of food grain, including paddy, this year.
As per preliminary estimates, paddy production is likely to be between 65 lakh tonnes and 70 lakh tonnes. The government is likely to procure about 40 lakh tonnes to 45 lakh tonnes through the paddy purchase centres.
According to information, the Civil Supplies Corporation had procured 34.73 lakh tonnes of paddy during 2019-20 rabi and 18.44 lakh tonnes during 2018-19 rabi.
The Union government had fixed the MSP for paddy at ₹1,868 per quintal for the 2020-21 crop year, which is ₹53 more than the previous year.
The government’s intervention would provide an interim platform for the farmers to sell their rabi produce at the assured MSP.
When contacted, A.P. Agricultural Mission vice-chairman M.S. Nagi Reddy said paddy procurement for the kharif season was still going on. But the procurement for the rabi season would commence as per schedule, he said.
An amount of ₹6,333.98 crore was spent on paddy procurement during 2019-20. Both kharif and rabi put together, the government had incurred an expenditure of ₹15,113 crore. As on February 19, paddy (kharif 2020-21 crop) worth of ₹7,287 crore was procured, he said.
Civil Supplies Corporation officials said that 1,442 PPCs were opened during the 2019-20 rabi season and 1,151 PPCs during 2018-19. More than 1.90 lakh farmers benefited during 2018-19 and 2.23 lakh farmers during 2019-20 rabi.
The government had spent ₹4,838 crore and ₹6,331 crore on paddy procurement during rabi 2018-19 and 2019-20 respectively. The total rice received by the corporation was 18.44 lakh tonnes and 22.94 lakh tonnes during 2018-19 and 2019-20 respectively, they said.
Agriculture officials said that the rabi yield would exceed expectations and estimates this year. The targeted area of paddy cultivation was 19.79 lakh acres. The season’s normal acreage was 17.60 lakh acres. As on February 20, 19.38 lakh acres was under paddy cultivation.
Nellore district tops with 5.06 lakh acres under paddy cultivation. Visakhapatnam district is at the bottom with 7,114 acres under paddy. The extent under paddy cultivation in Vizianagaram district is 9,379 acres.