Wheat per acre yield declines, rice’s increases

riceKARACHI: Despite tall claims about better agriculture productivity, the country’s main crop wheat has shown a declining trend in per acre yield during the last four years.

The State Bank’s latest Statistical Bulletin issued on Monday showed the per acre yield achieved in 2010 could not be achieved again in the next three years.

The per acre yield of wheat in 2010-11 was 2,933kg while in 2013-14 it dropped to 2,797kg per acre.

However, the area for cultivation of wheat increased during the last four years from 8.901 million acres in 2010-11 to 9.039m acres in 2013-14.

Wheat is the biggest crop and the staple food for many millions but neither the government nor the private sector seems to have made significant efforts to improve the low yield.

A significant development is that private banks have started disbursing credit in this sector.

The State Bank has set Rs500 billion target for the agriculture loans for 2014-15. The banks disbursed Rs98bn during first quarter (July-Sept) of this fiscal year compared to Rs70.8bn doled out in the corresponding period last year, showing a growth of 38 per cent.

While yield for wheat dropped, other major crops showed improvement during the same period.

The rice per acre yield was much higher than the three years earlier. It went up to 2,437kg in 2013-14 from 2,039kg in 2010-11, a 20pc increase.

The massive production has created a rice glut in the local market as the exporters could not benefit from high yielding rice crop.

The area under cultivation of rice also increased during the period from 2,365 acres to 2,789 acres in 2013-14.

Cotton production also increased from 725kg per acre to 774kg per acre during the four years. Yield per acre of maize increased to 4,053kg from 3,806kg per acre during this period.

Categories: Business

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