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Cotton sector shows all-round growth in FY15: CAI

MUMBAI: The cotton sector in India witnessed an all-round growth and the production is estimated at 402 lakh bales during 2014-15, Cotton Association of India (CAI) has said. Cotton production in the country, which was 158 lakh bales of 170 kilograms each in 2001-02, has more than doubled and is estimated at 402 lakh bales during 2014-15. "We are on the threshold of surpassing China in cotton production to become the world leader," CAI President Dhiren Sheth said at the organisation's 92nd Annual General Meeting here. The consumption too witnessed a healthy growth and is estimated at 306 lakh bales during 2014-15. India ranks second...

Last Updated: Wednesday, 31st December, 2014 04:35 PM Visits 450

Agriculture Ministry proposes 10% import duty on chana

NEW DELHI: The Agriculture Ministry has proposed an imposition of a 10 per cent duty on gram (chana) to restrict cheaper imports and protect farmers from sliding prices of the commodity. The proposal comes in the backdrop of chana prices ruling below the minimum support price of Rs 3,100 per quintal in some parts of the country. "We have proposed a 10 per cent import duty on chana (gram or chickpea). We are yet to seek Cabinet approval," a government source said. At present, pulses are imported at zero duty across the board for any category. Similarly, export of pulses is prohibited except...

Last Updated: Tuesday, 30th December, 2014 04:39 PM Visits 474

India to ratify protocol to promote innovation in agriculture, healthcare

NEW DELHI: India will ratify a new supplementary protocol which promotes innovation in agricultural and healthcare research and development that is safe for the environment and human beings. The Union Cabinet at its meeting chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi gave its approval for ratification by India of the Nagoya-Kuala Lumpur supplementary protocol on liability and redress to the Cartagena protocol on bio-safety. The new supplementary protocol provides international rules and procedure on liability and redress for damage to biodiversity resulting from living modified organisms (LMO). An official release said the proposed approach provides for an international regulatory framework in the field of...

Last Updated: Monday, 29th December, 2014 04:39 PM Visits 503

National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development's cold storage plan faces concentration in few states

The National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development's lending to build cold storages face concentration in a few states as it prefers food grain deficit states for allocation of funds over others. Nabard plans to disburse nearly three-fourth of the dedicated Rs 5,000 crore corpus in seven large states including Gujarat, Maharashtra and West Bengal while states like Odisha or Jharkhand received a smaller allocation. Other states in the top beneficiary list are Bihar, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan and Tamil Nadu. The government has created the corpus and placed it with Nabard for giving loans to agencies to build scientific warehousing infrastructure to prevent...

Last Updated: Thursday, 9th October, 2014 06:29 PM Visits 544

Raise farm productivity, says Abdul Kalam

 ‘Primary sector mission’ launched; due priority to drought-hit Anantapur in water grid project, says Naidu Former President A.P.J. Abdul Kalam has underscored the need for significantly enhancing agricultural productivity to ensure food security for the ever-growing population of the country. Dr. Kalam wanted top priority accorded to organic fertilizers to ensure that the increase in productivity was sustained in the longer term. He, accompanied by Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu, formally launched the ‘primary sector mission’ aimed at ensuring the future of farmers and people dependent on agriculture and allied sectors, at Garudapuram village on the outskirts of Kalyandurgam mandal headquarters in...

Last Updated: Wednesday, 8th October, 2014 06:30 PM Visits 629

New urea plants have to provide Rs. 300-cr bank guarantee

The Government has tightened the policy for new urea projects undertaken by the private sector to keep out non-serious players. For timely execution of the projects, it has now proposed that companies will have to furnish a Rs. 300-crore bank guarantee for each undertaking. Mode of release The Department of Fertilisers has notified an amendment to the New Investment Policy. The amendment stipulates that “all project proponents” will now have to provide Rs.300-crore bank guarantee for each project which will be linked to different stages of execution. “Out of the Rs.300 crore, Rs.100 crore will be released after finalisation of LSTK/EPCA contractors and release of...

Last Updated: Wednesday, 8th October, 2014 06:30 PM Visits 587

Cocoa prices increase as demand rises; Chocolates may become expensive

The demand and the price of domestically-produced cocoa are on the rise in India. As a result, the prices of chocolates could increase during the upcoming festive season. For a few years, Indian farmers have been struggling to produce high-quality cocoa, which has the potential to become an export product. P J Chackochan, cocoa farmer and exporter based in Wayanad, Kerala, said, “It has increased by Rs 40 vis-a-vis last year. But even after the creation of new demand, farmers may not benefit, because of the monopoly of the companies which buy cocoa from them.” “The production of cocoa on Indian farms...

Last Updated: Tuesday, 7th October, 2014 06:31 PM Visits 551

India expected to emerge biggest rice exporter in 2015

India may become the largest exporter of rice next year amid higher demand anticipated from African and Middle East countries and competitive prices. "In calendar year 2015, India should emerge as the largest exporter of rice — both basmati and non-basmati. From 4 million tonnes of annual export of non-basmati rice, we should be able to export 7 million tonnes," said BV Krishna Rao, managing director of Pattabhi Agro Foods, the country's biggest exporter of non-basmati rice. Rao said basmati and non-basmati rice exports should be 10-11 million tonnes, a level last seen in 2012. Surplus rice stockpiles in the country...

Last Updated: Tuesday, 7th October, 2014 03:28 PM Visits 832