January 11, 2012 admin


LUDHIANA, JANUARY 11: To help the Punjab farmers in taking sowing decisions regarding sunflower, the Agricultural Market Intelligence Centre (AMIC) of the Department of Economics and Sociology, Punjab Agricultural University
(PAU), has gathered and analysed market intelligence from various sources and has forecasted the sunflower prices in the range of Rs. 2800-3000 per quintal during May and June, 2012.
    Dr Jagrup Singh Sidhu, In charge, AMIC, PAU, said that the Punjab produced 25 thousand tones of sunflower from an area of 15 thousands hectares during 2010-11. Farmers grow sunflower after harvesting potato and prefer different hybrids developed by private seed companies. He told that the price of sunflower is affected by the demand and supply of its oil, international prices of edible oils, the government import policy in respect of edible oils and the production and export policies of leading exporting countries. Dr Sidhu divulged that recently, the exporting countries like Indonesia and Malaysia the main palm oil exporting countries to India, are encouraging export of refined palm oil at relatively higher price instead of raw palm oil, to develop their refining industry. The current import duty on refined edible oils is 7.5 per cent as compare to zero import duty on crude edible oils.  Consequently, prices of edible oils may rule higher in the domestic markets, said he. The government increased the minimum support price of sunflower from Rs 2350 per quintal in 2010-11 to Rs 2800 per quintal in 2011-12. Informing the farmers that the prices of sunflower in the major markets of the state ruled between Rs 2500 and 2600 per quintal during 2010-11, Dr Sidhu advised them to use this information to plan their area under sunflower vis-a-vis other alternative crop enterprises like spring maize, moong, early summer vegetables, etc. by comparing their relative returns. The centre revealed that the world sunflower production was about 30 million tones from about 23 million hectares of area during 2010. Ukraine was the largest producer of sunflower followed by Russia, Argentina, China, France and USA. In India, sunflower occupies the fourth place among oilseed crops in terms of acreage and production, highlighted Dr Sidhu. The area under sunflower in the country was 10 lakh hectares with a production of 6.5 lakh tonnes during 2010-11. The
major producers of sunflower are Karnataka, Maharashtra and Andhra Pradesh which account for about 70 per cent of the area and about 55 per cent of production of the country. Stating that the total oilseed production in the country during 2011-12 is estimated at 356 lakh tones, he added that the total edible oil production in 2011-12 is forecasted at 74 lakh tones, up 3 per cent over previous marketing year due to an anticipated increase in total oilseed production and larger oilseed crush.  Growing population, good supply conditions and rising income levels of Indian consumers are likely to raise edible
oil consumption levels to about 17 million tones of which 87 per cent is likely to be met through imports, told he. The vegetable oil deficit in 2011-12 is expected to be around 108 lakh tones.  Dr Sidhu disclosed that India imports about 90 lakh tones of edible oils which includes 70 lakh tones of palm oil, 14 lakh tones of soya oil, six lakh tones of sunflower oil and 15 thousand tones of other edible oils.

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