The Junagadh Agricultural University (JAU), Junagadh has predicted that prices of the white commodity, cotton, which are presently ruling at around Rs 4,750 per quintal are likely to go up to Rs 5,100 after January thanks to stable global demand and low ending stocks world over.
The price forecast report released by the department of agriculture economics of JAU states that for the second consecutive year, India will remain the largest cotton producer country in the world, surpassing China one more time. The report notes that area under cotton cultivation in the country has gone down from 119 lakh hectare (lh) in 2015-16 to 105 lh in the year 2016-17. But despite this reduction in acreage, overall production is expected to remain high. “The production is estimated to about 321 lakh bales in 2016-17, as against 301.5 lakh bales in the previous year. This is mainly due the normal and well-distributed monsoon in major producing states like Gujarat, Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka,” states the report.
The JAU report further states that cotton acreage has gone down in Gujarat also. It estimates cotton cultivation in about 23.82 lh in the current year as against 27.19 lh the previous year. However, the production is expected to remain almost the same as last year —about 91 lakh bales — thanks to evenly distributed normal rainfall and good precipitation received in first week of October which has brightened the yield prospects in unirrigated areas too.
Citing reports of International Cotton Advisory Committee (ICAC), a US-based organisation of cotton producing and consumer countries, the JAU forecast says that cotton cultivation in the world has dropped by one per cent but the production is likely to fall by seven per cent to 1,325 lakh bales as against 1,241 lakh bales last year.