The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) on Friday approved the revised fair and remunerative price (FRP) of sugarcane payable by sugar mills to farmers at Rs 230 per quintal. This will be applicable for 2015-16 starting this October. At present, the FRP is Rs 220.
Though Centre fixes the FRP every year and there has been similar Rs 10 increase per quintal in the past few years, the state governments are free to fix the price on their own. Usually, the minimum rates fixed by state governments are much higher.
The apex body of sugar producers, ISMA, is critical of this increase. "It will be a challenge for the sugar mills to be able to pay the FRP of Rs 230 per quintal of sugarcane linked to 9.5 percent sugar recovery in 2015-16 sugar season unless and until the ex-mill sugar prices improve from the current all India average of Rs 2,500-2,600 per quintal of sugar to Rs 3,400-3,500 per quintal," ISMA statement said.
The CCEA also approved revision of the buffer norms of foodgrains in the central pool. As per the revised norms, Food Corporation of India will maintain higher buffer stock and strategic reserves during the second and third quarter of the calendar year, while lower stocks in the first and last quarter of the year.
Higher stock of 41.12 million tonnes should be maintained in the second quarter as on July 1 instead of earlier limit of 31.9 million tonnes, 30.77 million tonnes should be kept in the third quarter as on October 1 as against previous norm of 21.2 million tonnes, a government release said.