GANDHINAGAR: There has been a considerable decrease in cultivation area as well as overall production of food crops and non-food crops in Gujarat in 2015-16 vis-a-vis the previous year, as per the latest estimates presented in the Socio-Economic Review of Gujarat.
This is the second consecutive year when Gujarat has registered a negative growth in agriculture sector, as the previous year's Socio-Economic Review gave similar estimates. As per the latest review which was tabled in Assembly recently, production of foodgrains during 2015-16 is estimated at 61.92 lakh tonnes compared to 77.95 lakh tonnes in 2014-15, a reduction of 16.13 tonnes in one year.
During the year 2014-15, production of cotton bales, each of 170 kg, was 96.24 lakh bales. This has decreased to 88.01 lakh bales during 2015-16, stated the survey. Similarly, production of oilseeds is estimated at 46.05 lakh tonnes during 2015-16 against the production of 48.82 lakh tonnes during the year 2014-15. Groundnut production is estimated to remain 28.92 lakh tonnes in 2015-16 against 30.18 lakh tonnes in the previous year.
As per the figures given in the review, major agro- produces showed negative growth over last year. Wheat production dropped by 15.17 per cent (in 2015-16), Jowar dropped by 58.26 per cent, Bajra dropped by 4.76 per cent and rice production showed negative growth of 31.61 per cent as compared to 2014-15 production.
Cotton saw a drop of 8.55 per cent, groundnut production registered negative growth of 4.17 per cent while oil seeds saw a dip of 5.67 per cent during 2015-16. The drop in production was commensurate with the drop in area of cultivation over previous year. Area of cultivation for wheat has dropped by 20.05 per cent, jowar by 48.88, bajra by 6.30, cotton by 5.34 and groundnut by 0.50 per cent. Only the area for oilseeds showed positive growth of 1.06 over previous year.
The Socio-Economic Review of 2014-15 had estimated a reduction of 14.35 tonnes in foodgrain production in comparison to 2013-14. Similarly, it has suggested dip in the production of cotton bales as well as oilseeds.
Just like the latest review, the previous report for 2014-15 also suggested reduction in the area of land used for cultivation of various crops. The reason for reduction is scarce rainfall in the last two years.