Late monsoon to reduce paddy output this year

The overall monsoon may have been close to normal this year, but the irregular downpour has affected the paddy production in Uttar Pradesh. The state government now believes that the paddy production in the state is expected to fall by five lakh metric tonnes as compared to the last year's output of 139 lakh metric tonnes.

This despite the fact that state had been able to nearly meet its sowing target of 59 lakh hectares for paddy. "Rainfall was deficient initially and picked up only later in July. Hence, although the sowing target was attained, the favourable time period for the crop was reduced and it affected the productivity, leading to a drop in expected production," said Rakesh Kumar Gupta, Joint Agriculture Director (Statistics), Department of Agriculture, Lucknow.

In June, the western past of UP had received as much as 90 per cent less rainfall for the period while rainfall in the east was 76 per cent deficient. In July, the monsoon gained strength and the state received considerable amount of rain.

The drop in the estimated production of rice is significant compared to the government's own earlier target of 145.59 lakh metric tonnes of paddy for kharif season. Owing to good rainfall late in the season, sowing of corn, jowar, bajra, urad , arhar, and groundnut had exceeded the set sowing targets in mid-September itself. However, not much change in the produce is expected for similar reasons.

While production of pulses is expected to touch 3.58 lakh metric tonnes from 3.55 lakh metric tonnes last year, bajra production is expected to remain the same at 16.33 lakh metric tonnes. Minor rise in jowar is expected from 2.13 lakh metric tonnes last year to 2.18 lakh metric tonnes this year.

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