Due to good seasonal rainfall and intermittent fog, India is expected to harvest more than 100 million tonnes of wheat this year, up from the record breaking production of 95.91 million tonnes last year. The crop has benefited from almost normal rainfall in Janaury and is likely to see a further boost in production due to above normal rainfall expected in February.
Over a 90% of total wheat production is consumed locally. No wonder, every year Indian farmers hope for a bumper harvest of our staple crop wheat. And when the essential rabi crop is grown only once a year, the growth becomes even more pertinent. Second only to China, the largest producer of wheat, India is likely to see record crop production and larger carry-over stocks which can be exported.
Wheat in India has a special feature credited to itself that it completes its life cycle in a short span of 6-7 months. After being sowed in October-November, the rabi crop is ready for harvest in March- April. This post monsoon season and winter season render sufficient and essential rainfall required for the cultivation of wheat crop.
While wheat is grown in Punjab, Uttar Pradesh and parts of Gujarat, six leading places in Punjab including Ludhiana, Ferozepur, Sangrur, Patiala, Faridkot, and Amritsar contribute 66 per cent of Punjab’s output of wheat. Not to forget at this point that Punjab is the second largest contributor of wheat to country’s total production. Moreover, Punjab receives surplus of over 30 lakh tonnes annually that is later transported to other parts of the country for consumption.
February is the rainiest winter month for Punjab and the country and according to Skymet Meteorology Division in India, February is likely to receive light to moderate rainfall in intervals. The first four days of month have already given moderate rainfall in parts of Punjab. For instance, Amritsar has already crossed its monthly average rainfall by receiving 35 mm of rain in one day.
With light to moderate rainfall expected in Punjab and other parts of the country on 7-10th February, 17-18th February and 27-28th February, India is set to witness record breaking production of wheat, eighth in a row probably.