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Wednesday, April 24, 2024

Centre-States food secretaries meet on procurement of wheat, paddy

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New Delhi: The Government has held discussions with the State Food Secretaries and decided to procure up to 320 Lakh Metric Tonnes (LMT) of wheat during ensuing Rabi Marketing Season 2024-25, while paddy procurement in terms of rice during Kharif Marketing season 2023-24 is estimated to be up to 100 LMT.

The Department of Food and Public Distribution (DFPD), Ministry of Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution, Government of India, organised a meeting of State Food Secretaries on February 28 in New Delhi to discuss the procurement arrangements for Rabi Crops in Rabi Marketing Season (RMS) 2024-25 and in Kharif Marketing Season (KMS) 2023-24. The Secretary, DFPD, Government of India, chaired the meeting, an official release said.

Various factors impacting procurement such as forecasts of weather conditions, production estimates, and readiness of states, were reviewed.

After deliberations, the estimates for wheat procurement during the ensuing RMS 2024-25 were fixed in the range of 300-320 LMT.

Similarly, the estimates for paddy procurement in terms of rice during KMS 2023-24 (Rabi Crop) were fixed in the range of 90 – 100 LMT.

A quantity of around 6.00 LMT of coarse grains /millets (Shri Anna) has also been estimated for procurement by the States during the KMS 2023-24 (Rabi crop). States/UTs were advised to focus on procurement of millets for diversification of crops and enhanced nutrition in dietary patterns.

Besides, State Government of Telangana shared the good practices adopted in respect of Supply Chain Optimization and indicated a saving of Rs 16 Crore annually through this environment friendly initiative by the Government of India.

Government of Uttar Pradesh shared the successful initiative regarding the linking of e-PoS with electronic weighing scales, which has effectively ensured the supply of foodgrains to the beneficiaries as per their entitled quantity.

Ministry of Agriculture & Farmers Welfare presented their evaluation study on Digital digital maturity of State MSP procurement applications. State governments were advised to adopt or improvise their existing applications in line with the standard and core features of AgriStack portal to bringing about transparency and efficiency in the procurement system before the start of KMS 2024-25.

During the meeting, issues relating to supply chain optimization for transportation of foodgrains from designated depots to Fair Price Shops, improving infrastructure in Procurement Centres, Good Milling practices, and On-boarding Fair Price Shops on Open Network for Digital Commerce (ONDC) were also discussed.

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