Wheat may be sown in place of chana during the Rabi season.

As chickpea (chana) prices have mostly remained below the minimum support price (MSP) levels of 5,230 per quintal this year, farmers in central India are expected to migrate over to planting greater acreage under wheat. The most common price at which transactions are made for chana is currently between Rs. 4,000 and Rs. 4,500 per quintal in Madhya Pradesh, the state that produces the most of the gram. In Rajasthan and Maharashtra, mandi rates are prevalent in a similar range. The government has increased the MSP for chana by 2% to 5,355 for the rabi marketing season of 2023–2024.

Chana has already been planted, and as of October 14, the pulses crop had been planted on roughly one lakh hectares, mostly in Rajasthan. “As farmers didn’t receive favorable prices this year, chana acreage may be harmed in the forthcoming rabi season. The acreage rose because the pricing was favorable last year. According to Indrajit Paul, Senior Manager of Commodity Research at Origo Commodities India Pvt Ltd, wheat may replace chana in some locations this year.

The coverage in the most recent rabi season was 114.95 lakh hectares (lh), up 4% from 110 lh in 2020. Punit Bachawat, an Ahmedabad miller, stated that “farmers will not be likely to sow chana this year as pricing were not attractive.” According to the fourth advance projection, chana production reached a record 137.5 lakh tonnes (lt) during 2021­­­22. Government organizations purchased more than 25.5 lt of chana as of June 30 a fourfold increase from more than 6.31 the year before. The government has set a production goal of 135 lt for the current rabi season in order to prepare for the future rabi season.

Rahul Chauhan of IGrain India predicted that wheat planting would rise and chana planting would fall in Central India. It is too early to make any judgments, according to All India Dal Mills Association President Suresh Agarwal, although there may be a diversion of 10 to 15 percent from chana to wheat and Masur. He said that the government had over 20 lt of chana stock, which might have an impact on prices in the coming months. On account of festival demand, chana prices have increased by 3–4 per kg over the past month.

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