Significant drop in Karnataka’s summer crop area: Agricultural challenges in the current season

In the ongoing season, the area under summer crops in Karnataka has witnessed a notable 57.7% year-on-year decline, plummeting to 137,000 hectares as of the latest report from the state agriculture department. This sharp decrease from the normal season area of 242,000 hectares is concerning, especially when compared to the 324,000 hectares sown in the same period last year. The state has set an ambitious target of 654,100 hectares for this season, with only 20.9% of the target area covered so far. The acreage dedicated to paddy has seen a drastic 80.5% year-on-year reduction, reaching 41,000 hectares from the previous 210,000 hectares. Chana cultivation, on the other hand, has experienced a positive shift, with 1,000 hectares sown compared to none in the previous year. However, the state’s overall progress indicates that only 5,000 hectares have been utilized for summer pulses, the same as the previous year, against a set target of 15,000 hectares for the current season.

Karnataka, known as the leading maize producer, has seen a decrease in maize cultivation to 19,000 hectares from 26,000 hectares a year ago, with a target set at 54,000 hectares for the current season. Cereal cultivation has notably decreased to 66,000 hectares from 242,000 hectares last year. Oilseeds, including groundnut, sunflower, and safflower, show a decline in acreage to 55,000 hectares compared to 62,000 hectares last year, with a target of 132,900 hectares for the season. Groundnut acreage specifically has reduced to 52,000 hectares from 57,000 hectares a year ago. In addition, government data reveals a 14% year-on-year decrease in wheat stocks held by the Food Corp of India as of February 1, standing at 13.2 million tonnes, down from 15.4 million tonnes last year. Despite efforts to sell over 10 million tonnes of wheat through the open market sales scheme, the central pool of food grains has seen depletion due to factors like open market sales, free foodgrain schemes, and Bharat atta sales.


The Food Corp of India’s open market sales have witnessed substantial activity, with a record 478,000 tonnes of wheat sold through weekly e-auctions on Wednesday, totaling more than 8 million tonnes since the auctions began in June 2023. Wheat stocks with the statutory body have seen a 19% decline compared to January, attributing to the overall reduction in total food grain stocks, which currently stand at 34.3 million tonnes, slightly down from 34.5 million tonnes a month ago but a 6% increase from the previous year’s 32.4 million tonnes.

Source: Geojit’s report on Agriculture picks