Rabi crop sowing is down by 12 percent in Gujarat

Farmer’s land holdings in Gujarat have declined by nearly 12 percent as input costs and  prices of most agricultural commodities fall. Cultivated area has declined despite crops like cumin (jeera) and psyllium husk (isabgol) growing by more than 50 percent this winter.  More than 40.77 lakh hectares have been sown this Rabi season. According to the state agriculture department, this is about 12 percent less than the  46.11 million hectares sown during the Rabi season in the last three years. The area under irrigated wheat is the largest  at 10.48 lakh hectares. However, the area under wheat has declined by 18 percent this Rabi season. The biggest decline was in  gram sowing, which fell by almost 37 percent compared to the average sowing  of the last three years. This year only 5.6 thousand hectares were sown with this crop.    “Rabi sowing  is coming to an end. Rising input costs, falling market prices of farm produce  and poor plant protection policies resulting in  crop failure have all contributed to poor sowing in Gujarat this Rabi season,” said an agricultural expert who did not wish to be quoted. Unlike the overall cultivation pattern in Gujarat, the area under major crops like cumin and isabgol has increased by more than 50 percent this Rabi season. 

In the last three years, an average of 3.5 million hectares were sown with cumin, while this year the crop was sown on 5.3 million hectares.  Gujarat Agriculture Minister Raghavji Patel welcomed the increase in the cultivation of spices such as cumin, saying that the increase in remuneration to farmers growing the crop has led to an increase in sowing. Patel mentioned that Gujarat was the largest producer of cumin in the country and much of the sowing of that crop was done in winter. Similarly, isabgol cultivation area increased by 65 percent to 21,000 hectares. This winter, the area of ​​important vegetables such as onions decreased by 15 percent to 61,500 hectares, while the area of ​​potatoes increased by two percent to 1.31 million hectares.

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