Area under paddy and pulses coverage has increased marginally to 8.33 lakh hectare and 4.51 lakh hectare so far this kharif season from the year-ago period on further progress in monsoon rainfall.
The area sown to oilseeds crops has also improved but the sowing of cash crops — sugarcane, cotton and jute has been lagging so far this season, according to the latest data released by the Agriculture Ministry.
Sowing of kharif crops begins with onset of south west monsoon from June. So far, rains are 11 percent higher than the average. Overall monsoon in June is expected to be normal but it may weaken next month, as per the Met Department.
As per the Agriculture Ministry’s data, paddy has been sown in 8.33 lakh hectare so far in the kharif season as against 8.20 lakh hectare in the year-ago period.
Similarly, pulses area has improved marginally to 4.51 lakh hectare from 4.32 lakh hectare in the said period.
Agri-experts said the sowing of pulses and other kharif crops will gather pace as monsoon has progressed well and the government has also announced higher support price for lentils to boost domestic production.
Besides, area sown to oilseeds has increased to 2.79 lakh hectare so far this kharif season, as against 2.22 lakh hectare in a year-ago, the data showed.
However, area coverage under coarse cereals is substantially lower at 7.19 lakh hectare as against 12.42 lakh hectare in the said period.
Among cash crops, area sown to sugarcane is down at 41.58 lakh hectare so far this kharif season, as against 43.92 lakh hectare in the year-ago period.
Similarly, cotton area is marginally down at 19.66 lakh hectare from 20 lakh hectare, while that of jute and mesta has been planted in 7.55 lakh hectare as against 7.81 lakh hectare in the period under the review.
The total area coverage of all kharif crops is lower at 91.61 lakh hectare so far this kharif season as compared to 98.88 lakh hectare at the same time last season.