Foograin output to be 250 million tonnes: Mukherjee

Last Updated: Thu, Feb 21, 2013 07:10 hrs

New Delhi, Feb 21 (IANS) India is expected to produce more than 250 million tonnes of foodgrain this fiscal, President Pranab Mukherjee said Thursday.

He also reaffirmed the government's commitment to enact the food security bill.

Addressing parliament at the start of the budget session, he said growth in agriculture and allied sectors during the 11th Five Year Plan was 3.7 percent compared to 2.4 percent in the previous one.

"The relentless efforts of farmers coupled with conducive policies of the government have resulted in record foodgrain production for two consecutive years, with last year achieving a peak of 260 million tonnes. This year, despite erratic and deficient rainfall, it is projected that we will produce more than 250 million tonnes of foodgrains," he said.

"The total stock of foodgrains with the public sector agencies was 662 lakh tonnes on Feb 1, including 307 lakh tonnes of wheat and over 353 lakh tonnes of rice.

"My government is committed to enacting the National Food Security Bill," the president said.

He said horticulture production reached an all-time high of 251 million tonnes during 2011-12.

Mukherjee said construction of godowns is being promoted under the Public Private Partnership mode and storage capacity of about 181 lakh tonnes will be created over the next two years.

He said the New Investment Policy for urea was expected to create nearly 100 lakh tonnes of additional production capacity, making the country self reliant in urea.

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