The government plans to issue price and demand forecasts for commodities including price sensitive horticulture crops

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The government plans to issue price and demand forecasts for commodities including price sensitive horticulture crops The government will issue price and demand forecasts for onion, potato, mustard, wheat and chana to balance demand with supply and help distressed farmers get better prices with the help of market intelligence. 

It hopes to end the practice of farmers sharply increasing planting of a particular crop after prices surge, which leads to a glut and losses in the following season. The government plans to issue price and demand forecasts for commodities including price sensitive horticulture crops to enable farmers to understand market conditions, said Prasanta Kumar Swain, joint secretary (marketing). 

“Farmers will have beforehand information on what to grow, what the demand in the market is and how market prices will behave. This will help them decide on the crop they want to grow. We are starting with five commodities and we will expand the scope in the coming seasons,” said Swain. 

The way India Meteorological Department (IMD) releases weather and rain forecast (IMD) releases weather and rain forecast to help farmers plan their cultivation, Market Intelligence inputs will help prevent glut of crops curbing price crash and at the same time encourage tillers grow crops which are short in stock. 

The agriculture ministry has engaged ICARNational Institute of Agricultural Economics and Policy Research (NIAP) as knowledge partner and Directorate of Marketing and Inspection (DMI) as technical back stopper. 

The decision to conduct the study is in line with the announcement made by the government in the budget for 2018-19 to create an institutional mechanism on market intelligence for farmers. The findings of the study will come in handy in the wake of the recently launched agriculture export policy aimed at doubling the farmers’ income by 2022. “The agriculture department will also provide inputs on international demand. So far, only traders have been benefited by research reports and findings. Now benefit will be directly handed over to farmers through this mechanism,” said a commerce ministry official, who did not wish to be identified. 

“The ministry has constituted an inter-ministerial technical advisory committee led by chairman National Rainfed Area Authority (NRAA) to analyse and validate the price and demand.

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By BOA Bureau