TIRUPATI: With likelihood of the prices of Bengal gram touching `4,000 a quintal by April/May as against current market price of `3,600 to ` 3,800 per quintal farmers all over are being advised to store and sell Bengal gram in April/May by Agriculture Market Intelligence Centre (AMIC) of the SV Agriculture College, here.
According to AMIC head P Raghuram, India is a net importer of chickpea with a huge domestic demand and has a share of 28 percent in the world’s chickpea market. “Bengal gram prices have firmed up since April 2011 owing to production losses in Madhya Pradesh. In AP, area under Bengal gram is 6.05 lakh hectares during Rabi season 2011-12,” he said.
Overall pulse output is expected to be lower in the current season and the second advance estimate of crop production from the ministry of agriculture stands at 17.4 mn tonnes, a four percent drop from 2010-11. Bengal gram production may be affected by bad weather in Rajasthan, Maharashtra and Andhra Pradesh. The government estimates indicate that the output may be at 7.66 mn tonnes, a 10 percent drop from 8.22 mn tonnes last year.
Reduced supply in the domestic market in the wake of robust domestic demand may likely to lead higher imports. At the harvest, there may be a brief pause in the prices, but with the passage of time, the prices will record an upward trend, Raghuram said.
He said that as per their price forecast of maize after econometric analysis and market survey, the prices of maize would be ranging from `1,100 to `1,150 till June 2012 and farmers have been advised to take the selling decision accordingly. In AP, during Rabi 2011-12, the area sown under maize was approximately 2.7 lakh hectares, he added.