Unseasonal rain and hailstorms have hit standing crops across North and West India. Officials have estimated major damage to the rabi crop thereby affecting the harvest such as cereals, oilseeds and pulses. The main states hit by the adverse weather are Punjab, Rajasthan, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, Maharashtra, Gujarat and Madhya Pradesh. As per the recent assessments by various agencies wheat crop has been severely affected in Punjab, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh. Apart from wheat, major losses in RM Seed in the states of Madhya Pradesh, Punjab and Haryana has also been feared. Reports of loss in chana is been reported from Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan and Maharashtra.
We in our first estimate (1st Rabi Crop Estimates for 2014-15 – Dated: 12th February 2015) had already lowered the crop size for major crops over 2013-14, but the recent heavy rains and hail storms in the major rabi crop growing areas has led us to reassess the situation further. With reports of increased incidence of water logging in wheat fields in Punjab, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh the total production is set to decline further to 86.43 million MT from earlier estimate of 92.14 million MT (a drop of 9.89 per cent over last year). Rabi Maize total production is set to decline by 16.55 per cent over last year. The barley production in Rajasthan and other parts of the country is set to decline by 8.15 per cent over last year. Overall, the total Rabi Cereals production is likely to decline by 17.19 per cent over last year.
In the pulses sector, the Chana (Chickpea) is expected to be most affected by the lack of residual soil moisture in major growing areas. We expect the production of Chana to decline by 26.01 per cent to 7.31 million MT over last year. Overall, the total Rabi Pulses production is likely to decline by 19.11 per cent over last year.
The oil seed sector is likely to see a decline of production by 22.17 per cent. Major decline of 25.75 per cent in production is expected in case of RM Seed over last year.
Based on the above reports and feedback from the Industry / Traders we have revised our Rabi crop estimates for upcoming season as: