Soybean is among the most important oilseeds grown during the kharif season
The break in rains in July and a massive pest attack have hit the soybean crop in several districts of this year.
According to a preliminary assessment by the Indore-based Soybean Processors Association of India (SOPA), the attack by pests such as stem fly might lead to 10-12 per cent drop in production in the state, but much will depend on the weather in the coming weeks.
SOPA based its assessment on a recent survey and said the most affected districts are Indore, Dewas, Ujjain, Dhar, Sehore, Harda, Shajapur, Mandsaur and Neemuch in MP, with some damage inn other places as well.
Soybean is among the most important oilseeds grown during the kharif season and bulk of the production comes from Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra and Rajasthan.
Last week, SOPA said that India’s soybean production could jump by 32 per cent in 2020 to 12.25 million tonnes from a year earlier due to higher area under the oilseed and increased yields on ample monsoon rainfall.
For Madhya Pradesh, it had estimated an 11.5 per cent rise in output to 5.8 million tonnes.
After the latest announcement, the actual production in 2020 could be quite close to last year’s level 5.2 million tonnes in MP.
Though farmers and agriculture department officials have fanned out in the fields to control the pests, scientists said it is very difficult to revive the crop in those parts where the stem fly pest has already entered the shoot.
Stem fly usually attacks if there is a long break in monsoon and farmers said the sudden break in rains in July after strong onset and progress in June has created perfect breeding grounds for the pest.
“We have seen stem fly attacks in Sehore, Nasrullahganj, Dewas and Ujjain districts of the state and our teams are out in the field to assess the impact and clear picture will emerge in the next 8-10 days,” J K Kanojia, head of Krishi Vigyan Kendra (KVK), Sehore (MP) told Business Standard.
He said the stem fly attack this in some soybean crop in is among the severest in recent times and is largely due to sudden drop in moisture levels in the soil.
Meanwhile, latest sowing data from across the country shows that till Friday, kharif crops have been sown in around 106.29 million hectares of land, which is 8.56 per cent more than the same period last year.
First Published: Wed, August 26 2020. 19:24 IST