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बारिश से भीगा 25 हजार क्विंटल धान

फतेहपुर /बिंदकी अंप्र :  बारिश ने व्यापारियों व किसानों को लम्बे नुकसान में पहुंचा दिया है। बिंदकी मंडी सहित क्रय केंद्रों में पड़ा 25 हजार क्विंटल धान भीग गया है। मौसम खराब होने से तौल बंद हो गई है।
कृषि उत्पादन मंडी समिति बिंदकी से गैर प्रांत के व्यापारियों ने स्थानीय आढ़तियों के माध्यम से धान की खरीद कर आढ़तों के बाहर जमा कर रखा है। यहां से जैसे-जैसे साधन मिल रहा है धान को बाहर भेजने का काम जारी है। गुरुवार की सुबह अचानक मौसम खराब हुआ और बारिश शुरू हो गई। आढ़ती जय कुमार ने बताया कि व्यापारियों को भारी नुकसान है। धान के भीग जाने के बाद उस गुणवत्ता का चावल नहीं बनेगा। अब धूप निकलेगी तो इसे सुखाने में भी कई दिन लग जाएंगें। इसके बाद भी बाहर के लिए लोड हो सकेगा। मौसम का यही हाल और अधिक बारिश हो गई तो व्यापारी संकट में आ जाएगा। आढ़ती आनंद कुमार, राम औतार सोनकर ने कहा धान भीग जाने से उसके चावल की क्वालिटी खराब हो जाएगी। इससे लम्बा नुकसान लगा है। असोथर धान खरीद केंद्र पांच हजार क्विंटल धान किसानों का भीग गया। इसी प्रकार खागा, थरियाव, हसवा सहित अन्य केंद्रों में व्यापारियों सहित किसानों का धान भीग गया है। बताते है कि सरकारी खरीद का भी सैकड़ो क्विंटल धान खरीद भीग गया है। खराब मौसम से यह स्थिति बन गई है कि एक सप्ताह तक खरीद होना मुश्किल हो गया है।

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Rice likely to rule around current levels

Karnal, Jan. 10:  The rice market is unlikely to see any major change in the next few days. The market may continue to rule around the current levels with marginal fluctuation, said trade experts.

A mixed trend was seen in the rice market with Pusa-1121 varieties rising by Rs 100-200 a quintal, while other aromatic and non-basmati varieties remained unchanged on moderate buying.

Amit Kumar, proprietor of Ginni Rice, told Business Line that the uptrend in Pusa-1121 is unjustified as it is not backed by fundamental factors. Prices of Pusa-1121 varieties increased by Rs 500-700 a quintal over the last 4 days.

Traders see this situation as a temporary phase and expect the market to see a correction in the coming days, he said.

In the physical market, Pusa-1121 (steam) moved up by Rs 200 to Rs 9,200 a quintal, while Pusa-1121 (sela) improved by Rs 100 to Rs 8,100.

Pure Basmati (raw) quoted at Rs 12,500. Duplicate basmati (steam) was sold at Rs 7,000.

Pusa-1121 (second wand) was quoted at Rs 7,000, Tibar at Rs 6,000, while Dubar at Rs 5,000.

In the non-basmati section, Sharbati (steam) was sold at Rs 5,000, while Sharbati (sela) was quoted at Rs 4,800. Permal (raw) was sold at Rs 2,300; Permal (sela) at Rs 2,350; PR-11 (sela) was sold at Rs 2,900; PR-11 (raw) at Rs 2,800; and PR14 (steam) at Rs 3,200.

Paddy Arrivals

About 8,000 bags of different paddy varieties arrived at the Karnal Grain Market Terminal. About 4,000 bags of Pusa-1121 arrived and were sold for Rs 4,100-4,200; 1,000 bags of Sugandha 999 were sold at Rs 2,600; 2,000 bags of PR at Rs 1,300-1,330; while 1,000 Sharbati bags were sold for Rs 2,200-2,220.

Reuters reports: In other Asian markets, Thai 5 per cent broken grade white rice was offered unchanged from last week at $420 a tonne.

Vietnam 5 per cent broken rice eased to $410 to $415 a tonne, free-on-board basis, from $415 to $420 in the last week of December.

Its 25-per cent broken rice was quoted at $385 a tonne, against a range of $385 to $390 on December 25.

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TNAU releases new rice variety

Coimbatore, Jan 11:  The Tamil Nadu Agricultural University (TNAU) has released a new rice variety, which has recorded a highest yield of 11,567 kg per hectare.

Rice TPS 5, released at a function today, observed as Farmers Day, has a normal yield of 6,301 kg per hectare, 13 per cent increase over the parent seed ASD 16, with 118 days duration.

This can be adopted throughout Tamil Nadu barring Ramanathapuram and Sivaganga Districts, a TNAU release said.

The highest yield of 11,567 kg was achieved at Mohanoor in Namakkal district.

TNAU also released Blackgram MDU 1, which has a yield of 1,679 kg/ hectare. The newly released variety of fodder sorghum Co31 has a yield of 227 tonnes per year.

The newly released Butter Pear Ooty seed has a yield of 97.13 kg per tree a year, meant for Nilgiris district and Kodaikanal.

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Red Yeast Rice Products in Taiwan Found to Have Too High of Levels of Cholesterol-Reducing Fungus

Several red yeast rice products in Taiwan have shown proof of high levels of contamination with mycotoxins, according to the nation's Food and Drug Administration.
Mycotoxins are produced by fungus and are naturally occurring, so it is not too shocking that the toxin is found in red yeast rice, which is cultivated with a specific mold culture (monascus purpureus) to produce its bright red color.  The levels of citrinin in the red yeast rice far exceeded the maximum allowable level of 5 ppm, with some samples testing positive for over 63 ppm.
Red yeast rice has received lots of publicity for its rumored ability to lower cholesterol and triglycerides, although the safety of the product has come under scrutiny lately.  The product is not regulated by the FDA in the U.S. unless it includes monacolin K, which acts as a statin (cholesterol-lowering drug).

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Weather-based crop insurance for paddy

Paddy crop in 11 districts has been brought under a weather-based crop insurance scheme launched by the Agriculture Insurance Company of India, a company formed under a Central government programme. The scheme, made applicable in Palakkad last year, is being extended to Thiruvananthapuram, Kollam, Idukki, Ernakulam, Thrissur, Palakkad, Malappuram, Kozhikode, Kannur, Wayanad and Kasaragod districts.

Paddy farmers who have already begun farming in the current agricultural season can apply to get enrolled in the scheme till January 10, a top official of the regional office of the company in Thiruvananthapuram told The Hindu . In those districts where farming begins late in the ‘puncha’ field, the last date for enrolment will be January 31, he said. Puncha farming in Idukki, Wayanad, Kollam, Kozhikode, Malappuram, Thrissur and Kasaragod falls in the latter category.

The paddy fields of Kuttanad, belonging to Alappuzha, Kottayam and Pathanamthitta districts, have another crop insurance scheme based on the yield of the crop. The scheme was implemented under a 15-year plan, prior to the launching of the weather-based insurance scheme.

The weather-based insurance scheme is being implemented by the Centre in coordination with the State. The State government issued the relevant order only on December 27, which accounted for the late announcement of the scheme.

According to the guidelines of the scheme, farmers have to get enrolled within a month of beginning of the farming season, which began in November for the current crop.

About 18,000 farmers in Palakkad had got enrolled in the scheme last year, out of which 15,000 received insurance claims arising out of bad weather which affected the crop, the official said. The government sets parameters for the weather for each season and considerable fluctuation will make the crop eligible for the claims.

About 130 weather stations have been set up by the government across the State to collect data on weather fluctuations. The scheme will not be applicable to those areas where the service of the weather stations is not available.

The maximum insurance coverage for paddy will be Rs.10,000 per acre and the insurance premium is Rs.200. The premium is eligible for government subsidy of 50-75 per cent.

Coverage areas

Apart from paddy, weather-based crop insurance is applicable to plantains, sugarcane, mango and cashew. separate coverage areas have been announced by the insurance company for each of these crops.

The weather-based insurance scheme will be applicable for sugarcane crop in Idukki and Palakkad districts while it will be applicable for mango farms only in Palakkad district. The scheme for cashew crop is applicable for Palakkad, Malappuram, Kozhikode, Kannur and Kasaragod.


No large scale distress sale of paddy, Odisha tells CACP

Odisha has denied any instance of large scale distress sale of paddy, maintaining that the government has taken steps like opening of maximum purchase centres and involved women self-help groups (WSHGs) to arrest distress sale.

In a reply to the Commission for Agricultural Cost & Prices (CACP), the state agriculture department said, “There is no instance of large scale distress sale (of paddy) by the farmers in Odisha. The state government has taken various steps to avoid distress sale of paddy such as opening of maximum purchase centres, involvement of Primary Agricultural Credit Societies (PACS), WSHGs and pani panchayats in paddy procurement operation as commission agent of state procuring agencies.”

The CACP had enquired if there were recent instances of large scale distress sale by the farmers and steps taken by the state government to arrest such distress sale.

The Odisha State Civil Supplies Corporation (OSCSC) has opened 2,448 purchase centres while Marketing Federation Ltd (Markfed) and National Agricultural Cooperative Marketing Federation of India (Nafed) have opened 116 and 75 centres respectively. Food Corporation of India (FCI) has established 20 centres whereas Tribal Development Cooperative Corporation of Odisha Ltd (TDCC) has set up 43 centres.

Farmers have to register with the societies at least seven days in advance along with the proposed quantity of FAQ (fair average quality) paddy to be sold, proof of identity and savings bank account of any commercial, rural or cooperative bank. The societies will allot date to the farmers to bring FAQ paddy to paddy procurement centres so as to regulate the flow of paddy.

The state government recently faced heat from the Opposition Congress in the assembly over distress sale of paddy. Congress MLA Anup Kumar Sai had alleged that farmers were forced to sell paddy in the price range of Rs 800-900 per quintal against the minimum support price (MSP) of Rs 1310 per quintal for common grade and Rs 1,345 per quintal for better grade rice.

This was due to non-opening of mandis by the government, he pointed out. Pratap Keshari Deb, minister for civil supplies, had rubbished the allegations, saying the government has opened mandis in six districts- Bargarh, Boudh, Kalahandi, Sambalpur, Nuapada and Subarnapur.

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India FY 2013-14 Basmati Rice Exports Forecast to Reach Record 4 Million Tons

India’s basmati rice exports are forecast to reach around 4 million tons in FY 2013-14 (April – March), the highest annual basmati rice exports on record and up about 12.5% from around 3.5 million tons in FY 2012-13.

Trade sources say that India's basmati rice exports between April and December 2013 have increased to around 2.8 million tons, up about 15% from around 2.45 million tons exported during the corresponding period in 2012.

According to the executive director of the All India Rice Exporters Association (AIREA), India's basmati rice exports are expected to reach a record high in 2013-14 due to demand especially from the Middle East countries including Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Iran.

According to official sources, Iran is the top buyer of India rice and basmati rice sales to the country have almost doubled during the first two quarters of FY 2013-14. India’s basmati rice exports to Iran between April-September 2013 stood at around 851,859 tons, up about 77% compared to around 481,328 tons exported during the same period in 2012.

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Punjab millers hit by slow pace of rice procurement

Punjab's rice mills, mostly small and medium-sized units, are running at far below their full capacity, with entrepreneurs attributing this state of affairs to the government's policies. Low levels of rice procurement by the Central and state government agencies are forcing them to operate at low capacity, entrepreneurs complain.

Punjab, which contributes a large share to the Central pool for the public distribution system (PDS), has a total of about 3,050 small rice processing mills. These mills process non-basmati rice procured by the Central and state government agencies meant for the PDS. The millers are paid processing charges and also get the by-products of paddy, such as paddy husk and bran.

The president of the Rice Millers Association of Punjab, Tarsem Saini, told Business Standard that Punjab's mills have the capacity to process one lakh tonnes of rice a day, but the government agencies have been lifting only 50,000 tonnes daily across the state, forcing the mills to operate at half capacity.

"The slow movement of grain from the mills makes us slow down the processing. While we can finish the entire stock of 12.5 million tonnes by February 28, we have to stretch it to August," said Saini.

He added: "We met senior government officials to apprise them that due to the rise in the moisture content after February, the grain starts deteriorating and that is a loss to the millers. But we did not get any relief. Some affluent millers have installed sortex machines (machines that can segregate damaged and coloured grain from healthy grain) but very few can afford this."

Sushil Singla of Lakshmi Rice Mills, Samana, lamented that there has been no upgradation in the assessment method for rice, which is done manually. Last year, a substantial chunk of rice was rejected by Food Corporation of India officials, on grounds of "pinpoint damage". Even the Panjab Agriculture University, Ludhiana, has found through studies that pinpoint-sized black spots on rice (or pinpoint damage) are evidence of excess iron and not signs of damage. But there is no clarity from any government agency on this.

Due to the annual hike in the power tariff and the consistent rise in wage rates, costs are steadily going up, but there has been no revision in processing charges for the past eight years. It is still Rs 15 per quintal, Singla added. The millers bear an additional maintenance cost of Rs 7-8 per quintal due to delayed processing.

Millers in the state speculate that as a result of the growing paddy acreage in the Eastern states - Orissa, West Bengal and even Chhattisgarh - rice-consuming states are now less dependent on Punjab. So, from 2010-11 on, the rice off-take from Punjab has slowed down. The shortage of staff in FCI is also, according to the millers, slowing the movement of rice from Punjab.

The millers remained on strike last month, to make the government aware of issues relating to rice processing. They resumed operations only early this month after an assurance from the state government.

Rice processing used to be a seasonal business, but has become an annual occupation due to lack of correct policies.

Gurdeep Cheema, the president of the Patiala Rice Millers Association, hopes that this is only a phase and that business will revive soon. The implementation of the Food Security Act, recently passed by Parliament, will trigger higher demand for food grain, and paddy processing in Punjab will see its fortunes restored, he hopes.

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Slow Paddy Procurement Leads to Distress Sale

Delay in lifting of paddy from the mandis by the procurement agencies of the State Government has led to distress sale benefiting rice millers and private traders.

According to reports from major paddy producing districts, huge stocks of kharif paddy are lying in open in different mandis and farmers waiting for days to sell their produce had no clue when their stock will be lifted by mandi functionaries.

“Government agencies are in cahoots with the rice millers and the deliberate delay in lifting the paddy will force the farmers to sell the paddy to the millers at cheaper rates,” said a ruling BJD MLA of Kalahandi district.

According to official reports, 10.23 lakh tonnes of paddy have been procured by the Government till January 3 against 14.27 lakh tonnes during the corresponding period last year.

The State Government has set a target for the Odisha State Civil Supplies Corporation (OSCSC) to procure three lakh tonnes of rice (equivalent paddy of 4.41 lakh tonnes) from Bargarh district, considered the rice bowl of the State, during the current kharif marketing season.

The State public sector undertaking has procured four lakh tonnes of paddy against 5.18 lakh tonnes procured during the same period last year. The district yielded a bumper crop this kharif despite flash floods due to cyclone induced heavy rain in few areas.

Farmers of Kalahandi district are hit hard by the awfully slow pace of paddy procurement. The OSCSC has procured nearly 87,000 tonnes of paddy against 1.52 lakh tonnes during this period last year.

This is despite the fact that 122 Primary Agriculture Cooperative Societies (PACS) are engaged in the district for procurement. Initially, 74 PACS were selected for procurement in the district.

The State run corporation has been procuring paddy through 2420 PACS in all districts.

The PACS are paid two per cent of the total proceeds towards mandi handling operations.

Similar is the situation in Sambalpur and Subarnapur, the two other major paddy producing districts in Western Odisha.

One lakh tonne of paddy has been procured in Sambalpur against 1.45 lakh tonne during the same period last year while in Subarnapur, 85,000 tonnes have been procured against a target of 1.47 lakh tonnes.

The Phailin affected Ganjam district is yet to open its account. The district lost its entire kharif crop to the devastating cyclone followed by subsequent flood.

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