Govt’s wheat stocks fall to 16-year low, 30-32 MT of procurement target for the season

Due to Food Corporation of India (FCI)’s active sale of grains on the open market during this fiscal year and minimal procurement over the previous two years, wheat inventories in the central pool dropped to a 16-year low of 7.73 million tonne (MT). The stockpiles are probably going to be dangerously near to the 7.46 MT buffer for April 1st, sources informed FE. It was far back in 2008 when wheat stockpiles fell below their current levels. In April of the same year, it had then fallen to 5.8 MT. The purchase by the government agencies under the minimum support price (MSP) operations decreased to a record low of 18.8 MT in the 2022–23 season, following a record procurement of 43.3 MT in the 2021–22 season (April–June). In the rabi marketing season of 2023–24, it did, however, increase by over 40% to 26.2 MT. The government agencies have reduced their purchases under MSP operations during the previous two seasons as a result of lower supply and strong local demand driving prices over MSP, an official stated. In an effort to lower retail costs, the government discontinued the open market sale of wheat earlier this month. The sale had been conducted through weekly e-auctions since June of last year, with a record-breaking 9.4 MT of wheat sold to bulk purchasers.

(Source-Financial Express)