The procurement of paddy and wheat has touched an all-time high and and the government will achieve the set target comfortably in the current marketing year, Food Secretary Sudhanshu Pandey said on Thursday. Wheat procurement has reached an all-time high of 411.12 lakh tonnes till June 2 in the current rabi marketing year ending March, as compared to 365.36 lakh tonnes in the year-ago period, he said. The previous record for wheat procurement was 389.92 lakh tonnes last year.
“We have revised the wheat procurement target to 432.5 lakh tonnes which we will easily achieve,” Pande told reporters in a virtual press conference.
The bulk of wheat procurement gets completed by June itself. About Rs 76,055.71 crore has been transferred into wheat farmers’ accounts, of which Rs 26,103.89 crore was in Punjab, Rs 16,706.33 crore in Haryana and Rs 22,211.6 crore in Madhya Pradesh. Talking about paddy, Pandey said the procurement has reached nearly 800 lakh tonnes till June 2, which is a new record, as against last year’s total purchase of 771 lakh tonnes.
The secretary said the paddy procurement target has been fixed at 940 lakh tonnes for the 2020-21 kharif marketing year ending September this year. About Rs 1.38 lakh crore has been transferred directly into bank accounts of paddy farmers so far this year. The government buys wheat and paddy from farmers minimum support price to meet the foodgrains requirement under the food law. State-run Food Corporation of India is the nodal agency for procurement and distribution of foodgrains.