India’s agri exports cross $50 bn in Covid-hit year; rice is top forex earner

  • According to the DGCI&S data, the export of wheat touched an all-time high at $2,118 million in 2021-22, growing 273% from the previous fiscal’s $567 million. agricultural reforms, Essential Commodities Act, farmers, agriculture sector India’s agricultural exports increased by about 20% to cross $50 billion for the year 2021-22, despite logistical challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic in the form of high freight rates, and container shortages, the Ministry of Commerce and Industry said. Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (APEDA), which works under the Ministry of Commerce and Industry, has scripted history by exporting agricultural and processed food products to the tune of $25.6 billion, which is 51% of India’s total agriculture exports of $50 billion, the ministry said. It has also surpassed its own export target of $23.7 billion for the financial year 2021-22 by registering shipments of $25.6 billion. Major exporting destinations were Bangladesh, UAE, Vietnam, USA, Nepal, Malaysia, Saudi Arabia, Indonesia, Iran, and Egypt. “The rise in export of agricultural and processed food products has been largely due to the various initiatives taken by Centre through APEDA such as organising B2B exhibitions in different countries, exploring new potential markets through product-specific and general marketing campaigns with the active involvement of Indian Embassies,” the ministry said. As per the ministry statement, the government organised more than 300 outreach programmes in collaboration with state governments for enhancing the exports of agricultural produce. “We have also created a products matrix for 50 agricultural products which have good scope for expanding our exports portfolios,” said Dr. M Angamuthu, Chairman, APEDA. As per the provisional figures released by the Directorate General of Commercial Intelligence and Statistics (DGCI&S), the agricultural exports have grown by 19.92% during 2021-22 to touch $50.21 billion. The growth rate is over and above the growth of 17.66% at $41.87 billion achieved in 2020-21. The cereal sector in APEDA exports contributes more than 52% share in 2021-22. Livestock products and other processed foods contribute 17 and 15% to APEDA export respectively in 2021-22.
    Source: Ministry of Commerce and Industry.
    According to the DGCI&S data, the export of rice was the top forex earner at $9,654 million during 2021-22, growing 9.35% from the previous year when it was $8,829 million. The export of wheat touched an all-time high at $2,118 million in 2021-22, growing 273% from the previous fiscal’s $567 million, while other cereals registered a growth of 53% by fetching $1,083 million in 2021-22 compared to the previous financial year when it was $705 million. Export of pulses reported a growth of 34% touching $358 million in 2021-22 from $265 million in 2020-21. Dairy products grew by 96% standing at $634 million in 2021-22 from $323 million in 2020-21, while buffalo meat registered a growth of just 4% as export of bovine meat increased from $3,171 million in 2020-21 to $3,303 million in 2021-22. Export of poultry products rose to $71 million in 2021-22 from $58 million in the previous year and sheep/goat meat export was up by 34% to $60 million in 2021-22 from $44 million in the previous year. Fruits and vegetables exports were up by 12% to touch $1,676 million in 2021-22 against $1,492 million in 2020-21, while processed fruits and vegetable exports were up by 7% to reach $1,202 million in 2021-22 against $1,120 million in the previous year. Exports of other processed food items grew by 34% during 2021-22 to touch $1,164 million against $866 million in 2020-21. The cashew exports also grew by 7% to $452 million in 2021-22 from $420 million in the previous year. Floriculture products reported a rise of 33% when they touched $103 million in 2021-22 from $77 million in 2020-21.
  • Broken rice: Centre can tap global demand

  • Hyderabad: The union government’s stubborn attitude in refusing to procure the Yasangi paddy harvest from Telangana can only mean two things – that it stands completely exposed in understanding the global market needs or it is guilty of wilful rejection of the State’s genuine pleas. There has been a growing demand for broken rice in the international market in the recent past, which shot up manifold on account of the Russia-Ukraine conflict due to severe shortage of maize that Ukraine produces and supplies to the world. Subsequently, many countries including China, Indonesia and Vietnam have completely switched over to broken rice for animal feed. According to the latest report of the International Grains Council as well as Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (APEDA), the export price of maize presently is around Rs 2,200-Rs 2,500 per quintal against the MSP of Rs 1,870 per quintal. Given the shortage of maize, the price of broken rice has surged to Rs 2,100 per quintal in the international market. Interestingly, China and Vietnam are the largest importers of broken rice from India. According to APEDA data, China started importing Indian rice in the last financial year. A report of the US Department of Agriculture says broken rice accounted for about 97 per cent of India’s rice exports to China during January-August last year. If the BJP government had done its homework on international market needs instead of having a face-off with the Telangana government, the issue of procurement of Yasangi paddy crop would have been resolved by now. Telangana presents a golden opportunity for import of broken rice since one of the issues is that the Yasangi paddy crop, when milled, leaves substantial residue of broken rice. Paddy was cultivated in about 38.5 lakh acres in Telangana during the Yasangi (Rabi) season which in turn is expected result in a yield of 70 lakh tonnes of paddy. Setting aside the age-old practice of paddy procurement, the Centre has been insisting that the Telangana government get the paddy milled into raw rice before procurement. The State government explained that this could result in broken rice due to severe climatic conditions prevailing in the State during summer. The Telangana government suggested that the Centre purchase the paddy and get it milled as per its requirements rather than insisting on supplying only raw rice. The State government also pointed out that the Centre was expected to pay MSP for paddy and not raw rice or broken rice. The present scenario presents a win-win situation for both the Centre and the State, but will the BJP government seize the opportunity or will it stick to its narrow political agenda is the million dollar question.  
  • APEDA Invites Bids For Crop Survey to Estimate Acreage & Expected Yield of Basmati Rice During 2022 & 2023

  • The government's agro export development authority, APEDA, has asked for bids by February 18 for a crop survey to estimate acreage, analyze crop health, and forecast Basmati rice yields for the years 2022 and 2023. However, it has kept out enterprises with merely yield estimating experience through crop cutting experiments, despite the fact that the government has enlisted multiple agritech companies, some without prior expertise, due to new sectors opening up for the private sector in the crop insurance segment. Due to the epidemic, the survey could not be completed in the last two years, however, APEDA has been estimating Basmati rice production estimates since 2003. "A field-based survey will be conducted on the basis of a sample group of farmers selected at the district level in the Geographical Indications (GI) area of Punjab, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Delhi, western Uttar Pradesh, and Jammu and Kashmir," according to a notice from APEDA.

    Specific Model

    It has requested that agencies submit specific models and methodology for the crop survey. It said that the 'Technical Bid' and the 'Financial Bid' must be filed separately. A firm must have a minimum of five years of experience conducting crop surveys using satellite imagery and field-based surveys for a trade group or government entity in India, according to the bidding rules. "Crop cutting experiment experience will not be considered for this reason," it stated. The acreage estimation of all basmati rice crop varieties, differentiated in traditional and evolved varieties of Basmati rice, including Sharbati and Sugandha types of non-Basmati rice, would be covered by satellite imageries and field-based survey. Reports will have to be submitted on a district-level basis for each State.

    Concerns Raised

    However, experts have questioned the legitimacy of non-notified varieties of Basmati since Sharbati and Suganda are thought to be primarily used for mixing in pure Basmati. "It could also be projected that non-notified varieties are in the process of notification," an expert said, adding, "why should adulterants be surveyed?" By providing a quantity of such non-basmati crops, the survey will unwittingly facilitate in depressing actual Basmati paddy prices or distort market sentiments, he said. According to APEDA, the selected agency will also be responsible for variety-specific crop health monitoring and analysis, as well as advance yield prediction using climate-based yield modeling based on 10 years of historical yield and climate data. Reports must be submitted by the end of each month in July, August, September, October, November, and December. In the event of unusual weather conditions or pests/diseases wreaking havoc on yields, a fortnightly report will be required, particularly during crop maturity. Bidders who receive at least 70% (49 out of 70) in technical presentations will be shortlisted, and their financial bids will be opened. The financial bid will be worth a maximum of 30 points.
  • Cereals lift farm exports to $17.5 billion in April-Feb

  • Rice shipments hit record 15 mt

    Exports of farm products monitored by the Agriculture and Processed Foods Development Authority (Apeda) increased by a fifth to top $17.5 billion during the April-February period of the last fiscal compared with $14.5 billion in same period the previous fiscal. The exports growth is notwithstanding the supply disruptions caused by Covid-induced lockdown. In rupee terms, exports grew 26 per cent to ₹1.30-lakh crore against ₹1.03-lakh crore in the same period last year.
    Strong overseas demand for products such as non-basmati and basmati rice, groundnuts, pulses, dairy products, fresh vegetables and fruits among others contributed to the growth in the shipments. However, some major products such as buffalo meat and guargum declined.


    Cereals, as a category, clocked the highest growth followed by processed fruits and vegetables, and floriculture and seeds, whereas the livestock products registered a negative growth. Cereals shipments rose 48 per cent to $8.75 billion during the period against $5.92 billion in the same period a year ago. In rupee terms, cereal exports were up 54 per cent at ₹64,952 crore (₹42,202 crore).
    Total rice shipments exceeded 15 million tonnes (8.4 million tonnes) during the period. This surge was mainly due to the strong demand for non-basmati rice, which saw volumes more than double to 11 million tonnes (4.57 million tonnes). The Indian non-basmati rice found favour with overseas buyers as other producers faced supply issues. “The exports are on expected lines. We expect the shipments for the fiscal 2020-21 to be around 12 million tonnes,” said BV Krishna Rao, President, The Rice Exporters Association. Though volumes of basmati rice saw an increase, the value of the shipments fell 6.24 per cent on decline in average realisations due to weak demand from Iran. Also, wheat and maize exports registered a major growth during the year. Wheat shipments grew more than six times to $446 million ($60 million) on robust purchases from countries such as Bangladesh and Nepal. In volume terms, wheat shipments were up at 1.7 million tonnes during the period as against 0.2 million tonnes. Categories that registered a growth during the period include fruit and vegetable seeds, pulses, dairy and processed items such as groundnuts, cereal preparations, milled products, alcoholic beverages, processed fruits and juices and vegetables among others.

    Meat & Dairy items

    Guargum exports saw a major decline of 46 per cent at $234 million due to weak demand from countries such as the US. Livestock products including buffalo meat, goat and sheep meat, processed meat and poultry products saw a decline both in volumes and value terms. Dairy products and animal casings were an exception among the livestock products registering a growth. Dairy exports were up by around 11 per cent at $285 million, while animal casings registered a growth of 5 per cent at $51 million.
  • Pesticide residue in paddy: Centre to develop SOP for two formulations, but exporters want more

  • Export inspection body checks rice exports for residues of 22 pesticides

    The Union Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers’ Welfare has launched an initiative to develop a standard operating procedure (SOP) for two pesticides so that paddy farmers can develop good agricultural practices and avoid the presence of their residues in rice exports. However, rice shippers are seeking the inclusion of more pesticides in developing such SOP. The two pesticides for which SOP would be developed are Tricyclazole and Buprofezin.

    “The EIA (Export Inspection Agency) examines basmati and non-basmati rice consignments for 22 pesticide residues when they are shipped to Europe. Shipments to other countries, too, are tested for pesticide residues. But recently, the government launched a programme to develop SOP for only two of the pesticides,” lamented a rice exporter, who did not wish to be identified.

    The exporter said that Indian rice shipments face problems concerning some 15 pesticides, and the government should have launched the initiative to develop an SOP for at least these.

    SOP for safe use of pesticides

    When contacted, Agricultural and Processed Food Products Development Authority (APEDA) Chairman Dr M Angamuthu told BusinessLine that the Ministry of Agriculture had initiated the development of “SOP for safe and judicious use of pesticides specific to use of Tricyclazole and Buprofezin”. Under this, APEDA is organising “sensitisation programmes for farmers towards good agricultural practices and judicious use of pesticides for export-oriented production of rice”, he said. The exporter said that the industry was working with farmers on good agricultural practices and paid at least ₹100 a quintal higher than the market price for pesticide-free rice. “These pesticides will be studied and analysed for developing SOPs. But when EIA is aware of the number of pesticides that are causing problems, we think more should have been included,” the exporter said. Tricyclazole is a fungicide used for controlling leaf and panicle blast in paddy. The formulation is banned in the European Union. The fungicide is absorbed quickly by the paddy plant, which helps it overcome fungal attacks on the plant.

    Research studies

    Research studies show that the chemical can have harmful effects on humans resulting in decreasing body weight. It could result in human reproduction besides causing eye and skin irritations and headache. Buprofezin is an insecticide used to control pests such as mealybugs, leafhoppers, and whiteflies in crops. It is also an insect growth regulator. This could be harmful to humans if exposed for long, with the liver likely to be affected due to toxicity. The EU has banned the use of this pesticide on food and feed crops since 2017. The rice exporter said that the SOP has been in the works over the last couple of years under the insecticides board’s initiative. An agriculture policy expert said that the focus has turned to Tricyclazole and Buprofezin since many rice export consignments are being detained abroad due to residues of these formulations. Tricyclazole is used by paddy growers when the weather turns humid. “Farmers have no option but to apply the chemical to control fungal attack,” the expert, who did not wish to be identified said. The issue has cropped with new varieties and short duration crops. For example, the new Basmati varieties are of short duration, and the plant growth happens during July-August when the humidity is high in North India. The humidity makes the plant suspect to a fungal attack, and the farmer has to apply the pesticide to save his crop, “which he nurtures like his own child”. On the other hand, with mechanisation taking over, farmers in South India have to wait for their turns for running harvesters on their field. This sometimes will result in the crop having to wait an additional 10-15 days before harvest. The farmer would not want to risk any pest attack during this time, resulting in spraying the pesticide. “This is also one reason why no alternative has been developed to this,” he added. A study on “Impact of pesticide residue on the export of Basmati rice” by Ankur Prakash Verma and Vinod Kumar of Sardar Vallabhai Patel University of Agriculture and Technology said Indian exports were facing problems in developed nations such as the EU, Japan, Australia and the US as the pesticide residues exceed the permissible limit.
  • APEDA organises buyer-seller meet to strengthen India-Azerbaijan

  • APEDA organises buyer-seller meet to strengthen India-Azerbaijan ties in Basmati rice export New Delhi, Jan 15 (PTI) Agri exports'' body APEDA organised a Virtual Buyer Seller Meet (VBSM) in association with the Indian Embassy in Azerbaijan on Friday, bringing together stakeholders for strengthening strategic cooperation between India and Azerbaijan in the export of Basmati rice. "The meet brought together key stakeholders from the respective governments and trade on a common platform for strengthening strategic cooperation between India and Azerbaijan in export of Basmati rice," the commerce and industry ministry stated. During the VBSM, presentations were made by leading Basmati rice exporters. The National Confederation of Entrepreneurs (Employers'') Organisations of the Republic of Azerbaijan explained their requirement or standards for Basmati rice imports from India. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the export promotion programme were not possible to be organised physically. The VBSM provided a platform to the exporters and importers of India and Azerbaijan. This VBSM with Azerbaijan is the 16th in the series of such events organised by APEDA with various countries. Earlier, such VBSM was first organised with the United Arab Emirates, followed by Kuwait, Indonesia, Switzerland, Belgium, Iran, South Africa, Germany, the United States, Canada and Australia, Thailand and Nepal, the Ministry said. PTI RSN HRS hrs
  • EU Ban Basmati Imports; Indian Consumer To Get Premium Basmati at

    EU Ban Basmati Imports; Indian Consumer To Get Premium Basmati At Affordable Prices

    Basmati rice is India’s preferred domestic variety of rice with the highest standard of texture and aroma

    In a not so very surprising decision, European Union has decided not to allow Basmati rice imports from India. Such decision may affect the price of Basmati rice in the market. The European Union which has witnessed many such decisions has done it in the name of strict laws for higher standards of no use of pesticides.

    This decision appears to be strange in nature. Basmati rice is India’s preferred domestic variety of rice with the highest standard of texture and aroma.   All India rice exporters association (AIREA) has told that permission to export Basmati rice to EU nations had been earlier given till 31 December. Post that the permission will automatically get cancelled due to no extension. The reason given is the use of fungicides for the safety of Basmati rice to EU nations (another possible incident of fumigation laws manipulation). It is also evident that India usually exports (PB-1) and 1,401 Basmati breeds to EU. AIREA also asked for one year’s extension to the given export limits and may soon ask union government to intervene in the matter.         It will definitely increase the domestic availability of Basmati rice by at least 1,00,000 tonnes to 3,00,000 tonnes, which may send a chill to domestic consumers.

    An expert on the consumer affairs matter had termed it as a bright chance to ordinary consumer class which would never have the chance to opt for premium Rs 200 per kilograms or higher rate’s Basmati rice.

    According to the food and agriculture organisation of UN, Basmati is still believed to be a luxury food item among a huge 300 million plus middle-class consumer market of India. India’s overall progressive procurement for rice as on 1 September 2017 for the year 2016-17 was 387.38 lakh tonnes against the procurement of 341.43 lakh tonnes in the parallel period of previous year. The procurement of wheat for the rabi marketing season (RMS) for 2017-18 was 308.01 lakh tonnes against the procurement of 229.62 lakh tonnes in the corresponding period of RMS of the year 2016-17.
  • MP govt and APEDA in Basmati rice geographical indication registry row

  • The geographical indication (GI) registry over Basmati rice has sparked a row between the Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (APEDA) and the Madhya Pradesh government, following the latter’s application for the GI registry of the central Indian state for Basmati rice production.  B M Sahare, additional director, ministry of agriculture, government of Madhya Pradesh, said, “Thirteen or fourteen districts of the state are currently producing Basmati rice.”  “There is a formidable basis for our application, and even the GI Registry, which is based in Chennai, has recognised our claim. But this was challenged in the court, and the matter is now sub judice,” he added. Sahare stated that the state government applied for GI Registry after conducting several of the mandatory tests at accredited laboratories to prove the claim.  However, a senior official dealing with the issue stated that APEDA’s position was open and clear. Only seven states are a part of the GI registry for Basmati Rice, and the authority will oppose any move to include any other state for it. APEDA also fears that this will open a Pandora’s box, and Pakistan and China can also claim the GI tag for Basmati rice.  Currently, eleven districts in Pakistan, under a treaty with India, enjoy GI registry for Basmati rice.  India, meanwhile, has a 85 per cent share in the global basmati rice trade. It exported basmati rice worth Rs 21,604 crore in 2016-17. In a previous statement, the ministry of commerce and industries reported in Parliament that the National Agricultural Research System, under the ministry of agriculture and cooperation has recognised only the states of Punjab, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Delhi and Uttarakhand, the western part of Uttar Pradesh and two districts of Jammu and Kashmir (namely, Jammu and Kathua) as the traditional geographical indication for Basmati rice cultivation. This means that the basmati rice produced in these regions are considered an intellectual property and will be acknowledged as Basmati rice, while the Basmati rice produced in other places will not be considered Basmati rice, as APEDA does not consider areas other than those with the GI tag for Basmati rice production.
  • APEDA invites offers for crop survey for Basmati rice estimation, yield

  • The Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (APEDA) has invited offers for crop survey for estimation, assessment of acreage, crop health and yield of Basmati rice. According to the notice issued by the authority, the field-based survey will be carried out on the basis of a sample group of farmers selected at the district level in seven geographical indication (GI) states, viz Punjab, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Delhi, Western Uttar Pradesh and two districts in Jammu and Kashmir. “The crop survey must be undertaken for estimation of crop area, crop health and projection, estimate of production and for survey during two Kharif seasons (i e Kharif 2017 and Kharif 2018) with detailed models and techniques to be used. They are required to be submitted in two separate envelopes,” it added. The offer should reach the APEDA office by 3pm on July 26, 2017. According to the eligibility criteria, the bidding firm should have minimum five years of experience to carry out field-based crop surveys undertaken for a trade body or government organisation in India.  The field-based survey would cover acreage estimation of all varieties of rice - Basmati, differentiated on the basis of traditional and evolved varieties, and Sharbati and Sugandha variants of non-Basmati rice. The reports will be submitted on a district-level basis for each state. Said a senior APEDA functionary, “Five reports will be submitted for the months of August, September, October, November and December. The first report will be submitted by August 31, 2017 and August 31, 2018 in the respective years.” “In case of unusual weather conditions, pest attacks or disease outbreaks affecting yields, a fortnightly report will be given during crop maturity time. The final report will contain crop-cutting estimation data, the post-arrival, post-harvest report in December and all statistics and maps,” said the official.
  • KRBL Limited wins the APEDA Golden Trophy for Outstanding Export

  • KRBL Limited wins the APEDA Golden Trophy for Outstanding Export Performance & Contribution in the Basmati Rice Sector

    Posted On: 2017-06-12 22:31:17

    Recognising the impeccable quality of its products, KRBL Limited, a leading Basmati Rice Company, has been awarded the Golden Trophy by APEDA (Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority), Ministry of Commerce and Industry, Government of India, for outstanding export performance for the year 2015-16. The award was presented by Smt. Rita Teotia, Commerce Secretary, MoC&I Government of India, at the 22nd Annual APEDA Award Function held on 12th June, 2017, at Vigyan Bhawan, New Delhi. Mr. Anil Kumar Mittal, Chairman & Managing Director of KRBL Limited, received the award on behalf of the company. Senior officers of the MoC&I and other government officials also graced the occasion. With over a 120-year heritage and an existence since 1889, KRBL Limited is the world's largest rice millers and Basmati rice exporters with a comprehensive product chain. KRBL exports basmati rice to 73 countries in the world and has a capacity of producing 195 MT of rice per hour. On receiving the award, Mr. Anil Kumar Mittal, Chairman & Managing Director of KRBL Limited said, "We are honoured to receive this award from APEDA as it reflects our continued commitment to satisfy our customers and deliver best quality Basmati Rice in India and around the world. This is truly a reflection of the high quality of products appreciated in domestic as well as international markets. Our flagship brand - India Gate Basmati rice not only enjoys market leadership in India but many important markets of Middle East and South East Asia. KRBL Limited believes that awards and recognition not only acknowledge success but also act as an impetus to motivate the company and its employees. It inspires us to take up new challenges that set new benchmarks in the industry. Taking cue from Ms Teotia's speech today, KRBL is committed to extending its global branding network to enhance value addition in India. "We are equally committed to marketing Indian Quinoa and other healthy grain from India in our brands to create newer product categories and newer markets, also suggested by her. MoC support to further these new initiatives is very encouraging," Mr Mittal added. Today, KRBL stands at the top slot of the Indian Basmati rice industry, unmatched and unparalleled in every aspect. With a strong retail presence across different sizes and price points, India Gate continued to allure consumers across all age groups and regions to lead the market and is today the most aspirational basmati rice brand in India. As world's largest Basmati exporter, KRBL has its wings spread across all the Basmati eating regions like Asia, Middle East, Europe, USA, Canada and Africa. Shares of KRBL LTD. was last trading in BSE at Rs.395.75 as compared to the previous close of Rs. 414.5. The total number of shares traded during the day was 48140 in over 1187 trades. The stock hit an intraday high of Rs. 419.95 and intraday low of 393.3. The net turnover during the day was Rs. 19430593.

  • Jammu to be hub for export of quality basmati rice: SKUAST-J

  • Rising Kashmir News

    Jammu:  Experts on Tuesday said that Jammu will become a hub for export of quality basmati rice in India. This was said during a one-day workshop on ‘Quality improvement in production of Basmati rice for export’ at Chatha, wherein about 225 farmers from Basmati rice growing region of Jammu, Samba and Kathua districts participated and was attended by the national and state level experts of Basmati rice. According to a statement, the workshop was organized by Sher-e-Kashmir University of Agricultural Sciences and Technology (Jammu), in collaboration with Basmati Export Development Foundation (BEDF), APEDA, Government of India, organized one day workshop and focused on the production, marketing, utilization and export of Basmati rice in context of development of entrepreneurship. “A high level exchange of knowledge between the scientists, farmers and field functionaries to develop the road map for Basmati rice farming was taken up during the workshop, a spokesman said in the statemnet. During the programme, the spokesman said, the official website of Society for Integrated Development of Agriculture, Veterinary and Ecological Sciences (SIDAVES) was launched by Prof. P.K. Sharma, Vice Chancellor of SKUAST-J and the chief guest of the workshop. Prof. Pardeep Kumar Sharma congratulated the farmers for their enthusiastic participation in the workshop and appealed them to maintain the quality of their basmati produce to fetch a good price in the market and double the income of basmati growers. He advised the farmers to keep in touch with the scientists and experts for any kind of problems in their fields. He appealed to the basmati growers to be prepared to register themselves with the online portal to be launched shortly by the Government of India. He also congratulated Dr. Jag Paul Sharma, director Research and his team for the launch of the society SIDAVES for the benefit of mother earth and mankind. Dr. Jag Paul Sharma, Director Research of SKUAST-Jammu, gave a lecture on entrepreneurship in Basmati and its organic cultivation. He advised the farmers to adopt scientific advisories and regulations to obtain optimum yield and quality in basmati entrepreneurship in Jammu province. He emphasized for further improvement in basmati rice with increased grain length, high aroma, grain yield and resistance to diseases and insects and providing value addition to basmati rice varieties. Sharma stressed upon the use organic basmati seed for organic production of basmati rice, along with the use of bio-fertilizers and bio control agents. He advised for the development of farmer producers organizations (FPOs) of basmati growers in Jammu province. Dr. Ritesh Sharma, Principal Scientist (BEDF) interacted with the basmati growers of Jammu district and gave a lecture on strengths and challenges in export of Basmati rice and quality production techniques. He enlisted Ranbir Basmati and Basmati 370 of Jammu among the top 30 varieties of basmati rice and told that Pusa Basmati 1121 contains the longest grain length and constitutes 80 percent of the total basmati export. He discussed in detail about the problems, solutions, weaknesses and strengths of basmati growers of Jammu district and told that the pesticide residual effect is very less in Jammu Basmati as compared to other regions. Ravi Aggarwal, Chief Manager, Northern Region, Indian Potash Limited (IPL) appreciated the efforts of scientists of SKUAST-J in improvement of production technologies of basmati rice in Jammu province and requested the farmers for optimum use of fertilizers in their fields. IPL organized a quiz competition among the participating basmati rice growers wherein five winning farmers were facilitated with 50 kg bag of potash to each. Dr. S.K. Singh, Scientist of Organic Farming Research Center- Chatha, elaborated eco-friendly diseases and insect pest management of Basmati. Dr. R.K. Salgotra, Coordinator of School of Biotechnology presented welcome address, while, a formal vote of thanks was presented by Dr. R. K. Arora, Associate Director Extension and Incharge of all KVKs of SKUAST-Jammu.
  • Centre, basmati exporters looking at alternative fungicides to treat rice

  •  Isoprothiolane is good alternative to tricyclazole, but restricted in the US

    The Centre is working with basmati exporters to identify alternatives to tricyclazole — a fungicide used to treat rice — as the European Union seems inflexible in its decision to bring down the tolerance level for the chemical next year, effectively banning its use.

    “If alternatives are not found, India’s basmati exports to the region could get hit drastically as the levels of tricyclazole in Indian rice is mostly much higher than the default level of 0.001 ppm (parts per million) that the EU wants,” a government official told BusinessLine.

    The Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (APEDA), under the Department of Commerce, together with basmati rice-exporting companies, is looking at possible solutions to the problem, the official added.

    No issues with current cap The maximum residue limit (MRL) for tricyclazole, a fungicide used by rice-growing countries to protect the crop from a disease called ‘blast’, is at present fixed at 1 ppm by the European Union.

    Indian exporters do not have any problems staying within this limit, but once the default level of 0.001 ppm kicks in, much of the $3 billion of basmati exported to the EU from India could get affected.

    The industry and government are finding it difficult to zero in on other fungicides that could be used because of a peculiar problem, the official said. While the fungicide isoprothiolane (IPT) could be a good alternative to tricyclazole as it has similar properties and is allowed in the EU, it is difficult to advise farmers to switch to it as the chemical is restricted in the United States.

    So, in order to save the market in the EU, India would have to put at risk its market for basmati rice in the US, if it switches to IPT. The Indian Council for Agricultural Research (ICAR) is also working on varieties of rice that are resistant to the heat blast disease but it will take time to yield results.

    “Before we are able to have our own varieties of disease-free rice, we have to use our diplomatic skills to sort out the problem with the EU and also with the US if required,” the official said.

    India is continuing to talk to the EU hoping to convince it to change its mind about lowering the maximum residue limit for tricyclazole.

    “The EU does not seem too impressed by the problem Indian basmati exporters may face next year. India is talking to countries like Italy and Portugal, which do not support the EU initiative of raising the tolerance level, to strengthen its argument,” the official said.

    (This article was published on May 11, 2017)
  • Poor offtake by Iran dents India’s basmati Rice exports


    Commodity OnlineIndia, May 3 -- India&#39 s Basmati Rice exports dropped 7% in dollar terms at $3. 2 billion in 2016-17 financial year as against the previous year s $3.47 billion according to provisional data released by the Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (APEDA).In volume terms basmati shipments were estimated at 3.99 million tonnes against 4.04 million tonnes.The dip in basmati shipments mainly due to the reduced offtake from Iran the largest buyer APEDA noted.Non-basmati Rice shipments grew 10.5% in value at Rs.17 122 crore as against Rs.15 483 crore in FY2015-16 . In volumes the non-basmati rice shipments were up at 6.81 million tonnes against 6.46 million tonnes in the previous year.Overall Rice shipments exceeded 10.81 million tonnes about 3% higher than the previous year s 10.50 million tonnes APEDA said. Published by HT Digital Content Services with permission from Commodity Online. For any query with respect to this article or any other content requirement, please contact Editor at
  • After Nirmala Sitharaman’s ‘quality’ order, APEDA gets cracking on improving

  • After Nirmala Sitharaman’s ‘quality’ order, APEDA gets cracking on improving basmati rice

    APEDA is making all efforts to ensure production of export-compliant basmati rice in the country, according to a senior official from the body.

    By: | Updated: May 5, 2017 3:39 AM
    Agricultural, Processed Food Products, APEDA, basmati rice, AIREA, Nirmala Sitharaman, National Standards Conclave, Rajan SundaresanAPEDA is making all efforts to ensure production of export-compliant basmati rice in the country, according to a senior official from the body.
    Dibyajyoti Bhattacharjee The Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (APEDA) is making all efforts to ensure production of export-compliant basmati rice in the country, according to a senior official from the body. It will be working closely with the governments of seven states that produce basmati rice and run awareness campaigns among the rice farmers for selective use of pesticides in cultivation, keeping in view the target market. APEDA will participate in 15 workshops in the basmati rice producing states along with agricultural universities, the All India Rice Exporters’ Association (AIREA) and the state agricultural departments over the next few months. This development comes at a time when commerce minister Nirmala Sitharaman, while inaugurating the ‘National Standards Conclave’ in Delhi on May 1, has called on the industry to produce quality goods at affordable price to secure higher market access in the foreign countries. Welcoming the move by APEDA, Rajan Sundaresan, executive director of AIREA, said with the expected improvement in realisation rates of basmati rice in major overseas markets, India will be able to penetrate deeper into world rice markets in near future. Basmati rice, arguably the most premium variety of rice available in the world, has lucrative market in the EU, the US and the Middle East. But exports of basmati rice to some countries are hampered due to non-compliance of technical regulations concerning product standards. Actually, exports of basmati rice from India faced problems due to detection of pesticides residues exceeding prescribed Maximum Residue Limits (MRLs). India’s basmati rice exports to the world, which stood at $3.22 billion in 2016-17, declined more than 7.3% compared to the previous year. You might also want to see this:
    Speaking to the FE, the APEDA official said recently that the EU has brought down the MRL of tricyclazole (an ingredient used in pesticides) to limit of determination (LOD) i.e. 0.01 mg/kg. So, basmati rice grown in India will not qualify for exports to the EU after January 2018, unless it conforms to the new standards prescribed by the EU. Similarly, the US does not permit the presence of residues of pesticides like Isoprothiolane and Buprofezin beyond 0.01 mg/kg. He stressed that only those pesticides should be used by farmers which are recommended by the state agricultural universities for application to paddy crops. Additionally, correct dose of the recommended pesticides should be used and pre-harvest interval should be observed as mentioned on the label of the packing of the respective pesticides.