Poor demand, weak prices hit farm exports in April-October

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India’s farm produce exports have seen a sharp decline in the first seven months of the current financial year on weak demand and poor realisations. The total value of shipments including major products such as basmati rice and buffalo meat fell 16 per cent in dollar terms to $8.8 billion in April-October, against $10.5 billion in the same period last year. In rupee terms, the shipments were down 15 per cent to 61,681 crore (72,523 crore in same period last year), according to the latest figures released by the Agricultural and Processed Foods Export Development Authority (APEDA) under the Commerce Ministry.

 Basmati rice shipments were down by a tenth at $2.22 billion ($2.47 billion) on lower volumes, despite a marginal increase in per unit realisation. In volume terms, shipments stood lower at 2.05 million tonnes (2.29 million tonnes). Basmati rice is India’s largest export product, and accounted for a fourth of the total farm produce shipments. Buffalo meat, the second largest export produce, saw a 13.5 per cent dip in value at $1.90 billion ($2.20 billion) on poor volumes and weak prices. Volumes were down at 6.69 lakh tonnes (7.25 lakh tonnes). Buffalo meat accounted for 21.62 per cent of the total farm produce exports.

Non-basmati rice

Non-basmati rice saw a major decline in both volumes and value terms after being outpriced in the international market. Non-basmati rice shipments were down 37 per cent at $1.14 billion ($1.81 billion) during the period. Volumes fell drastically to 2.81 million tonnes, against 4.48 million tonnes in the corresponding period last year. Non-basmati rice accounted for 13 per cent of the overall farm produce exports. Other products, such as guargum, peanuts, pulses, dairy and fresh fruits and vegetables, also saw a decline during the period due to weak demand and lower prices. The only products that registered a growth during the period were wheat, processed vegetables and processed meat. However, the exports of these products were in small quantities.Source

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