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Wednesday, August 04, 2021

Harish Damodaran


The writer, national rural affairs and agriculture editor for The Indian Express, is currently on sabbatical with the Centre for Policy Research, Delhi

Fertiliser sales down on erratic monsoon rains
Mon, Aug 02, 2021

Real worry, however, is soaring global prices and availability of nutrients in rabi season ahead of UP elections.

Farmers bear brunt of stockholding curbs as Centre exempts importers
Fri, Jul 23, 2021

These wholesale rates at mandis in major producing centres are well below the Centre’s minimum support price (MSP) of Rs 5,100 per quintal.

A farmer-friendly solution to cut cattle methane emissions
Mon, Jul 05, 2021

ICAR develops feed supplement that reduces emissions and also boosts milk production.

Stock limits on pulses: Govt order flies in face of farm law
Sun, Jul 04, 2021

On Friday, the Department of Consumer Affairs (DCA) issued an order to impose stockholding limits on all pulses, barring moong or green gram, for a period up to October 31, 2021.

Explained: Will food follow fuel and become costlier?
Wed, Jun 30, 2021

The global oil price hike has been passed on to Indian consumers. Will that happen with food too? Currently, food inflation is relatively low in India. A look at factors that could influence what you pay in coming months.

Explained: In Covid-19 pandemic, here are four food records
Thu, Jun 17, 2021

PDS offtake, procurement, warehouse stocks, and foodgrain exports hit highs in the last one year. Abundant farm produce and government initiatives enabled these even amid the Covid-19 pandemic.

Explained: Rural India played the economy’s ‘saviour’ in 2020-21. Can it do so again?
Thu, Jun 03, 2021

The economy saw its worst-ever contraction in 2020-21, but the farm sector actually grew by 3.6%. In the second year of the Covid-19 pandemic, however, farmers face new challenges and uncertainties.

Explained: Why has the Modi government increased subsidy on DAP?
Thu, May 27, 2021

The government has hiked the subsidy on DAP fertiliser by 137%. A look at the political and economic compulsions that led to the move after fertiliser manufacturers had hiked retail prices.

Govt asks fertiliser makers to not hike prices of DAP, MOP
Wed, May 19, 2021

Companies have been requested “to keep the reasonableness of their profits and not increase the prices”, Aparna S Sharma, joint secretary in the department of fertilisers, has said in a communication to the industry.

Explained: How rice and wheat exports hit a record high
Sat, May 22, 2021

Thanks to surplus grain, exports in a pandemic year crossed 13 mn tonnes for rice, an all-time high, and 2 mn tonnes for wheat, the highest since 2014-15

Agricultural exports zoom 17.5% in 2020-21, Pandemic raises questions on repeat performance this year
Thu, May 13, 2021

The farm sector’s standout export performance, the best since the $43.25 billion of 2013-14, was thanks to a good monsoon, agriculture production being relatively unaffected by the Covid-19-induced lockdown, and surging global commodity prices.

Why Covid is a reality check for Modi’s flagship welfare schemes
Wed, May 12, 2021

While 10.35 crore PM-JAY Cards have been issued since the launch of ‘the world’s largest health assurance scheme’ in September 2018, it has proved to be of little use in the ongoing Covid-19 epidemic.

A single price for Covid-19 vaccines will stimulate production, ensure efficient vaccination
Fri, Apr 23, 2021

The irony is that the section more prone to infecting others would also be low-income people, who cannot ordinarily afford the vaccine.

Agriculture policy should target India’s actual farming population
Mon, Apr 19, 2021

Most government welfare schemes are aimed at poverty alleviation and uplifting those at the bottom of the pyramid. But there’s no policy for those in the “middle” and in danger of slipping to the bottom.

Rollback of fertiliser price hikes unlikely as Centre keeps subsidy rates unchanged
Sat, Apr 10, 2021

Indian Farmers Fertiliser Cooperative (Iffco) Wednesday raised its maximum retail price (MRP) for DAP from Rs 24,000 to Rs 38,000 per tonne.

After diesel, fertilisers to take toll on farmers; IFFCO hikes prices by 45-58%
Fri, Apr 09, 2021

A 50-kg bag of di-ammonium phosphate (DAP), the most widely consumed fertiliser in India after urea, will cost farmers Rs 1,900, more than 58 per cent higher than the existing rate of Rs 1,200/bag.

Millets pose production and consumption challenges; MP’s Dindori project shows the way forward
Mon, Mar 29, 2021

In rural India, the National Food Security Act of 2013 – which entitles three-fourths of all households to 5 kg of wheat or rice per person per month at Rs 2 and Rs 3 per kg, respectively – has reduced the demand for millets.

Won’t say cheese: Dairy industry frowns as FTA with EU nears closure
Thu, Mar 25, 2021

The fear is of large-scale imports once the market is fully opened up: EU is the world’s biggest producer (103.5 lt out of a total 212.22 lt in 2020) as well as exporter (9.31 lt out of 21.62 lt) of cheese.

From cold store to rotis, women scientists lead research at IARI
Fri, Mar 19, 2021

Half of IARI’s divisions — including biochemistry, plant pathology, entomology, nematology, microbiology, agricultural physics, agricultural chemicals and agricultural economics — are headed by women.

Farmers reap twin bounty: Bumper rabi harvest, good prices
Wed, Mar 10, 2021

That’s good news for the economy when agriculture is the only sector expected to grow by 3 per cent amid an overall 6.5 per cent contraction in 2020-21 -- and for the NDA government facing unrelenting protests over its farm reform laws.

As ethanol turns cheaper than petrol, sugar industry sees opportunity
Mon, Mar 08, 2021

Oil marketing firms set to procure record amount to blend with petrol

Covid effect: Underfed animals, dip in herd size fuel surge in milk price
Sun, Feb 21, 2021

All across India, dairies have reported milk price increases over the past couple of months. These increases are partly attributed to global factors.

Challenge for Food Corporation of India: Rising stocks, cost, & push to procure
Mon, Feb 15, 2021

At the projected economic cost of Rs 29.94/kg for wheat and Rs 42.94/kg for rice, the corresponding per-kg PDS consumer subsidy in the coming fiscal would work out to Rs 27.94 and Rs 39.94, respectively.

India’s farm crisis is of the middle peasant, not the chhota kisan
Thu, Feb 11, 2021

It is the rural middle class — which experienced a roughly four-decade spell of prosperity from the 1970s and now has its back to the wall — that’s at the forefront of the agitation against the farm reform laws.

Govt should repeal farm laws, like UPA took back FRP ordinance after protests: Jayant
Sun, Feb 07, 2021

In November 2009, the then government withdrew a law that took away the powers of states to fix cane prices within hours of a farmer protest at Jantar Mantar.