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Wheat procurement falls, but no shortage issue: Government

New Delhi, June 23: Decline in arrival of wheat has also resulted in shortfall in its procurement this season by the official agency Food Corporation of India (FCI), Food ministry sources said here on Thursday even as the government maintains that there “will not be any shortage” of the commodity. “Last year’s procurement of wheat was at about 31 million tonnes, this year there is a margil decline to 25.6 million tonnes due to low arrival,” a ministry source said here, adding bulk procurement is completed generally between April and June. The domestic production has suffered this year due to drought and long dry spell in several parts of the country.

“However, with the Food Corporation of India (FCI) having adequate stock there should not be any shortage,” a senior Food Ministry official told IANS. The government’s confidence about no shortage comes from the fact that initially the government had proposed a buffer stock of only 27.7 million tonnes as on July 2016.

In view of the lower procurement, the government has reduced the quantity of wheat to be sold under Open Market Sale Scheme (OMSS) in 2016-17, the source said. (IANS)