“In Punjab and Haryana, farmers in the irrigated belt will choose to sow wheat while those that fall in the rainfed area will go for mustard,” said Rahul Chauhan, director of agri research firm IGrain India.
While farmers in the eastern areas of Uttar Pradesh may opt for mustard, the western region of the state will likely choose wheat. Madhya Pradesh farmers may also prefer to sow mustard and wheat.
The government has increased the MSP of these crops – ₹110 per quintal for wheat, ₹500 per quintal for lentils and ₹400 for mustard seeds – incentivising farmers to grow these. The maximum rate of return at the current MSP is 104% for rapeseed and mustard, followed by 100% for wheat and 85% for lentils, a government statement said Tuesday.
The larger increase in the MSP of mustard and rapeseed could also help in the diversion of some wheat to these oilseeds, said experts. “The government gave handsome increases for mustard and rapeseed and masoor. We can expect some wheat area to be diverted to these crops,” former agriculture secretary Siraj Hussain said, adding that the government should ensure that the landed cost of imported masoor and substitute edible oil was not less than MSP-derived prices.
Chana (gram) is expected to be the crop of choice in Gujarat, although the area covered could be less than last year as chana prices have been low. The government also has a huge stock of chana which it has sold to several states at discounted prices.
In Maharashtra, farmers are expected to plant chana. The area under cotton and maize may also increase. In Karnataka, urad and moong are expected to be the crops of choice. Sowing of rabi (winter) crops begins in October, immediately after the harvest of kharif (summer) crops.
Around 4,32,000 hectares have already been planted with oilseeds like rapeseed, mustard and taramira in Rajasthan, data from the Ministry of Agriculture showed.