17th April, 2021
Inflation of edible oils is common consumer distress, but oilseeds are the bat of farmers. Oilseed farmers in the mandis have started getting much higher value from the MSP of their produce. That is why the farmer is getting more value by selling his produce in the open market instead of the government agency. Oilseed growers of all states are taking advantage of this special opportunity.
The mood of the domestic edible oil market is definitely impaired due to the global market, but it can definitely help in reducing the import dependence of edible oils. Due to the increase in the prices of oilseeds, farmers have turned towards oilseed farming.
The boom in edible oils started before the sowing of the Rabi season. In view of this, the trend of farmers is towards the cultivation of oilseed crops. This is the reason why the estimated yield of oilseeds in the current season will be 3.73 crore tonnes, which is more than 3.31 crore tonnes in the last crop year 2019-20. This estimate of production is much higher than the average oilseed yield of previous years.
Due to the huge difference in demand and supply of edible oils in the international market, prices have increased a lot. This is having a direct impact on domestic consumers. According to edible oil market experts, the prices have increased by 30-70 percent. At the same time, in the year 2012, per capita, oil consumption was 15-16 kg per annum, which has now increased to 20 kg.
Mustard procurement is generally done in Haryana in the first fortnight of Rabi season procurement. But this time, traders in the mandis here have bought mustard MSP of Rs 4650 per quintal in different mandis at the rate of 5,500-5800. Oilseed farmers have benefited more from the sale in the open market this time. While some farmers' organizations in Punjab, Haryana, and western Uttar Pradesh have been agitating for a long time demanding a guarantee of MSP on the Delhi border.
Covid-19 has affected the supply of edible oils to global markets due to labor shortages in Indonesia and Malaysia and reduced production in Ukraine, Argentina, and Brazil. China has also made heavy purchases of edible oils, which have had an impact on supply. The government has initiated special efforts to bridge this gap between demand and supply. For this, a mini oil seed mission has been started. Soybeans, mustard, and groundnut account for 90 percent of the country's oil needs.
Import is a big burden
In fact, 70 percent of the total consumption of edible oils in the country is met by imports. One has to import 150 million tonnes of edible oils annually, which costs more than 73 thousand crores rupees. This alone accounts for 40 percent of total agricultural product imports. The total consumption of edible oils is 26 million tonnes.
Government agencies do not ask
Till now it has not been possible for government agencies to buy even a single seed oilseed. The basic reason for this is that the rate of oilseeds has also reached the seventh sky due to the rapid rise of edible oils. Government agencies can purchase only at the prescribed MSP. Whereas private traders in Mandi have started buying from MSP at a much higher price.