Wheat procurement: Punjab to shut most mandis on May 13

Chandigarh : As the arrivals of freshly harvested wheat crop in state mandis has dipped, the Punjab food, civil supplies and consumer affairs department on Thursday decided to end the procurement operations by closing most of the mandis Friday.

Around 2,200 mandis were set up in the state for procuring the rabi crop. However, 232 mandis will be operational in the state for a few more days to receive the late harvested crop, said food, civil supplies and consumer affairs minister Lal Chand Kataruchak.

Arrivals are still expected in Amritsar, Tarn Taran, Bathinda and Ludhiana districts. The minister said 45 mandis will remain operational in Amritsar, 21 in Tarn Taran, 18 in Bathinda, 15 in Ludhiana, 11 in Gurdaspur, 14 in Jalandhar, eight each in Kapurthala and Moga and five each in Muktsar, Fatehgarh Sahib, Mohali, Rupnagar and Pathankot.

Three mandis will remain open in Fazilka, Mansa six, Sangrur ten, Barnala 13, Faridkot four, Hoshiarpur six, Nawanshahr three, Malerkotla four, Ferozepur and Patiala nine each.

Procurement in Punjab started on April 1 and due to sudden heat wave in March when the crop was at the maturing stage, the yield fell by 13.5% from 48.68 quintals per hectare last season to 42.07 quintals per hectare in the current season.

Due to fall in the yield, state’s four procurement agencies and Centre’s Food Corporation of India (FCI) have procured 96 lakh tonnes and private traders have bought 6 lakh tonnes out of total arrivals of 102 lakh tonnes, a fall of 33 lakh tonnes as a total of 135 lakh tonnes was expected.

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