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Southwest monsoon likely to start withdrawing from September 5

NEW DELHI: The southwest monsoon is likely to start withdrawing from September 5, with a delay for four or five days, and the weather office is confident that "one good spell" during its final month will be enough to overcome the season's current deficit and help meet its forecast of above-normal rain.   "Current weather conditions indicate a delay of four-five days in the withdrawal of monsoon from the normal date. Starting from September 5, the withdrawal from west Rajasthan might manifest," said KJ Ramesh, director general of the India Meteorological Department.   He said the department will announce the withdrawal date by...

Last Updated: Tuesday, 30th August, 2016 05:37 PM Visits 126

Agri-tech firm Crofarm ties up with 2,000 farmers in Maharashtra, Karnataka

MUMBAI: Agriculture technology startup Crofarm has tied up with over 2,200 farmers across Maharashtra and Karnataka to help them receive better value for their produce, and improve their quality of work and life.   With the new relationship, it takes its total tally of partner farmers to 14,000, the company said in a statement today.   Crofarm's core focus is to offer better value to farmers, reduce wastage, help them drive sales and to ensure that businesses get the best deals.   Providing farmers with the facility to directly negotiate with the market will help them circumvent unorganised money-lending and the bureaucratic loops of...

Last Updated: Monday, 29th August, 2016 05:36 PM Visits 144

Government to talk to all stakeholders for GM seed policy: Agriculture Ministry

NEW DELHI: The agriculture ministry said it will review all petition and consult all stakeholders before taking a final call on the proposed genetically modified (GM)seed licensing policy even as global seed companies including Monsanto and Bayerformed a new body on Friday.   An agriculture ministry official said the seed industry is resorting to pressure tactics and Monsanto withdrawing its application on second generation cotton technology was part of that.   "They (seed companies) are resorting to some pressure tactics assuming that we are going ahead with it (issuing guidelines on GM seed technology). We are not going ahead with this right now....

Last Updated: Saturday, 27th August, 2016 05:36 PM Visits 147

ADVANTA SEEDS PAC 801 hybrid rice: Philippines farmers’ weapon against climate unpredictability

It’s happening all over the planet. Climate change and global warming are triggering extreme weather patterns such as super typhoons and devastating draughts. In a tropical country like the Philippines, such anomalous weather conditions are detrimental to rice production and other agricultural endeavors. Filipino farmers, in fact, are still recovering from their recent bout with El Niño, which caused drought and land degradation that significantly reduced the country’s rice production. Although the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) has reported that weather conditions would normalize in July, we must continue to prepare for more aberrant weather looming ahead. Because rice, a...

Last Updated: Wednesday, 10th August, 2016 11:35 AM Visits 170

GST: Tax rate likely to be higher than 18%

A day after the Bill to amend the Constitution was approved by the Rajya Sabha, paving the way for the Goods and Services tax (GST), the Centre seemed to concede that the rate at which the new indirect tax will be levied on most goods is likely to be higher than 18 per cent. While the decision would be taken by the GST Council, comprising the Union and State Finance Ministers, proposed to be set up after the process of amending the Constitution is completed, Revenue Secretary Hasmukh Adhia told a press conference that it would be “premature” to expect the...

Last Updated: Friday, 5th August, 2016 05:35 PM Visits 128

Area under pulse cultivation up by 54 per cent in Maharashtra

PUNE: Farmers in Maharashtra have increased the area under urad by 75 per cent and pulses by 64 per cent as on August 2, compared with the same period last year. Due to good rainfall, the kharif acreage has increased by 21 per cent over the previous year.   Of the 34 rural districts in the state, 25 have received more than 100 per cent rainfall. The area under foodgrains, including rice, jowar, bajra and ragi, has increased by 34 per cent.   The area under pulses has increased by 54 per cent, with urad registered the highest increase followed by tur and...

Last Updated: Thursday, 4th August, 2016 05:34 PM Visits 106

Industry wants exemption of tea from GST ambit

KOLKATA: tea industry wants exemption of tea from GST as it is a garden produce and coming within the purview of the definition of agriculture. The industry officials feel that in case full exemption of GST is not possible then the rate should be kept on par with the current tax rate of 5% -6%.   Tea cultivation, harvesting and manufacturing is primarily an agricultural activity. Tea has been defined as an agricultural produce within the definition of the Service Tax Rules. Further in the Draft Model GST Law "Agriculture" includes floriculture, horticulture, sericulture, the raising of crops, grass or garden produce...

Last Updated: Thursday, 4th August, 2016 05:34 PM Visits 119

To check rising prices, govt okays import of 30,000 tonnes of pulses

To keep a check on rising prices, the government has decided to further import 30,000 tonnes of pulses, 20,000 tonnes oftur or arhar and 10,000 tonnes of urad, for the buffer stock.   The decision to this effect was taken in a meeting of Price Stabilization Fund chaired by Union consumer affairs secretary Hem Pande.   The meeting reviewed the procurement anddistribution of pulses from buffer stock.   Government agencies have so far procured about 1,19,572 tonnes of pulses from the domestic market and farmers, and 56,000 tonnes of pulses have been contracted for import. Thus 1,75, 572 million tonnes of pulses are available...

Last Updated: Wednesday, 3rd August, 2016 05:33 PM Visits 113