Meanwhile, farmers have given thumbs down to soybean sowing this season due to lower realisation and weak rainfalls during the last one month in major growing centres. The rainfall estimates during the last few days has resulted in better growth of germinated plants and sown seeds. However, the intensity of rainfall during the rest of this season is going to be crucial for plant growth and soybean output.
The Ministry of Agriculture, however, has on July 14 reported a sharp decline in sowing area under oilseeds including soybean with total acreage at 10.39 million in this kharif sowing season, compared to 11.58 million by the same time last year.
“With the monsoon not living up to its promise, the soybean sowing has only reached 60-70 per cent of the arable area. We are sincerely hoping that condition would improve in the coming days, else it might warrant re-sowing which will add to the input cost for the farmers,"said Dinesh Shahra, MD, Ruchi Soya Industries Ltd.
"We are closely monitoring the situation. Being in the agricultural space, Ruchi Soya has braved several natural onslaughts like fllods in 2013, drought in 2014 and erratic rainfalls last year. We are prepared to face all eventualities and have strategies in place for meeting any market conditions that may arise,” he added.
Meanwhile, data compiled by the Solvent Extractors’ Association of India (SEA), showed 15 per cent increase in import of vegetable (edible and non-edible) oil at 1.34 million tonnes in June 2017 compared to 1.17 million tonnes in the corresponding month last year.
“Currently, soybean, rapeseed prices are hovering below the minimum support price (MSP). Prices of these oilseeds have fallen between 20 and 30 per cent over the last one year. The current prevailing prices are the lowest in five years which is enough to discourage farmers to switch to other remunerative crops. To encourage farmers to improve oilseeds sowing, SEA has strongly represented the government to increase import duty on CPO to 20 per cent and refined oil at 35 per cent to be in effect, immediately,” said B V Mehta, Executive Director, SEA.