NEW DELHI: The country's potato production is estimated to be around 47 million tonnes this year, just behind the all-time high witnessed in 2014.
The output stood at 43.4 million tonnes in 2015-16 crop year (July-June), while last record was 48 million tonnes achieved in 2014-15.
"Looking at the crop condition and arrival in mandis, I feel the overall output will be close to record levels. Potato output would be around 47 million tonnes this year," National Horticulture Board (NHB) Managing Director A K Singh told PTI.
Initially, NHB had projected 43.88 million tonnes output for this year. But this will be revised after assessing the arrival, he said.
Singh further said that total area under potato was more or less at last year's level. But, good weather conditions coupled with recent unseasonal rains just before the harvest gave boost to the crop prospect and improved yields, he said.
The crop condition in Uttar Pradesh, West Bengal and Bihar -- the top three potato producing states -- is in very good condition.
As per the state data, the output in Uttar Pradesh -- the country's top potato producing state -- is projected to be higher at 15 million tonnes this year as against 13.8 million tonnes last year, he added.
So much potato is grown in UP that the centre has started procurement operation to ensure farmers avoid distressed sale.
The output in West Bengal and Bihar is also expected to be better than last year. In 2015-16, the output stood at 8 million tonnes and 6 million tonnes, respectively, in these two states.