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As new arrivals begin, moongbean prices surge on crop concerns

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Moongbean (green gram) prices have opened higher as the new crop has started arriving in various markets in Karnataka and Rajasthan on concerns that deficient rainfall and lower acreage have affected its production.

In the mandis of North Karnataka, where the crop has begun arriving, prices of good-quality moong are ruling in the range of ₹10,000–11,000 per quintal, trade sources said. The lower-quality moong is trading in the range of ₹8,800–10,000.

Price pattern

The current price pattern in Karnataka is contrary to the trends witnessed in the earlier years, when moong often ruled below the minimum support price (MSP) levels soon after harvest. However, this year, with the acreage down by 57 per cent in the State and the poor progress of the monsoon hurting the crop, prices have opened higher than MSP levels. The Centre has declared an MSP of ₹8,558 per quintal for the 2023 crop year.

On Monday, the modal price (the rate at which most trades take place) ranged between ₹9,388 and 11,143 across various markets in the producing centres of North Karnataka.

Reduced acreage

“Prices are increasing due to weather concerns. In Karnataka, the sowing is less due to late rains, while in Rajasthan, the sowing was done quickly initially due to the rains brought about by cyclone Biparjoy, but the overall area across the country has declined,” said Rahul Chauhan of IGrain India.

Rajasthan, which saw 15 per cent surplus rains from June 1 until the end of August, has seen a deficit of 79 per cent during the month of August to date. Similarly, Karnataka, which saw a shortfall of 20 per cent during June-August, faced a deficit of 74 per cent during August.

“In Rajasthan, the early sown crop is maturing, and as rains are not there, the condition of the early sown crop is good. However, for the middle and late-sown crops, the weather is not favourable. If there are no rains, the grain size may decrease. Overall, the crop needs rain or else it may impact productivity” Chauhan said.

In Jodhpur, mandi rates for the new crop are hovering between ₹7,200 and 8,300, while the old crop is traded in the range of ₹6,500-7,600. The old moong crop traded at ₹6,000–7,100 levels as of August 1, Chauhan said.

Punit Bachawat, a moong miller in Ahmedabad, said the condition of the moong crop in Rajasthan is bad due to a lack of follow-up rains. As a result, the crop is likely to be down by over half this year, he said. “Though there was early sowing and good flowering, the seed development has taken a hit due to a lack of rains,” he said.

All India moong acreage is down at 30.63 lakh hectares (lh) this kharif compared with 33.33 lh a year ago. In Rajasthan, due to the early start to the sowing season, the acreage was up at 22.11 lh (20.53 lh). In Maharashtra, the area is down at 1.75 lh (2.77 lh) and Madhya Pradesh at 1.69 lh (2.03 lh).

The pulses complex is witnessing a bullish trend due to the shortfall in the production of tur and urad last year. Also, the lower sowing this kharif is aiding the price trend in pulses, while chana prices have also firmed up in recent weeks.



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