Prices for wheat rise to a record level

Agricultural produce marketing committee (APMC) yards and wholesale stores in India have seen wheat prices jump to a record high, despite October 1­30 arrivals reaching a 7­year high. The change coincides with a 5% increase in wheat prices globally on Monday following Russia’s announcement that it was pulling out of the UN-mediated agreement to allow grain exports in the Black Sea region. At a cost of $2,700 per quintal, wheat is shipped to Delhi’s flour mills. Pramod Kumar, President of the Roller Flour Mills Federation of India, stated that the cost for mills in Bengaluru is between $2,900 and $2,980.

Wheat from Haryana is being used to feed the nation. We don’t know where the wheat from Uttar Pradesh went, and Punjab has no wheat, according to Delhi-based flour miller Adi Narayan Gupta. Arrivals between October 1 and October 30 were 8.13 lakh tonnes (lt), according to Agmarket, a division of the Agriculture Ministry. This was the biggest amount since 2015. Arrivals are at a three-year high for the whole season beginning April 1 with 21.71 million tonnes (mt), surpassing the influx of 23.73 mt in 2019.

In the third week of October, wheat prices at APMC yards jumped to $2,570.3 per quintal from $2,400.74 in the last week of September and $2,465.17 in the third week of September. Wheat’s retail price on October 30 was $30.37 per kg, down from $30.99 a month earlier, according to the Department of Consumer Affairs. Despite increasing arrivals, Millers and analysts give two causes for the surge. One is that many mills lack the stockpiles they need to handle the situation until the new wheat crop is harvested at the end of February or the beginning of March.

The other explanation for the increase is that the Center did not release wheat under the open market sale scheme (OMSS) this year. In order to keep market prices and inflation under control, OMSS assisted mills in obtaining raw materials at a low cost. Since we are discounting the quantity of food grain exported during the months of March through May before the Center forbade shipments, there is little wheat available overall, according to economist S Chandrasekaran.

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