The government on Thursday said there is no fodder supply crisis at present but the prices remain high and steps are being taken to address any possible shortages in the future.
According to a senior official, the current high prices of fodder is in line with other agri-products and states have not reported any shortages for now.
The issues related to fodder supply were discussed during a review meeting on Thursday. The meeting was chaired by Department of Animal Husbandry and Dairying Secretary Rajesh Kumar Singh and attended by representatives of 15 state governments apart from various stakeholders.
The government has also decided to fast track setting up of 100 fodder FPOs (Farmer Producer Organisations) by National Dairy Development Board (NDDB). Besides, a national action plan will be prepared to address any possible future shortage of fodder.
“In the meeting, the states mentioned that there are no reports of fodder shortages right now but there is escalation in prices. The inflationary pressure is in line with other agricultural products,” the senior official who was part of the meeting told PTI on the condition of anonymity.
There is general inflation in dry fodder prices, which have increased to Rs 8-14 per kg from Rs 5-6 per kg in the year-ago period. The price trend also depends on location and in the case of green fodder, the availability depends on the seasonal, the official said.
In a normal year, the official explained that the country has a deficit of 12-15 per cent, 25-26 per cent and 36 per cent when it comes to green fodder, dry fodder and concentrated fodder, respectively. The deficits are mainly due to seasonal and regional factors.
However, the current inflationary trend in fodder is due to decline in wheat crop and rise in input costs like diesel, the official said.
The total area under fodder is limited to about 4.6 per cent of cropped area and this has remained static for last four decades.
The official said that to address short term fodder shortages in traditionally dry areas of Gujarat and Rajasthan as well as states with less rains, the government has decided to connect the deficit states with surplus fodder producing states of Punjab and Haryana.
“In Punjab and Haryana, some units have come up which manufacture fodder from basmati rice straw and have fodder surplus. This fodder can be used for one year and we plan to connect these two states with those who need the supplies,” the official said.
At the review meeting, it was also decided to fast track the establishment of fodder FPOs by NDDB. “The nodal union agriculture ministry has agreed to approve 100 FPOs by next week,” the official said.
As part of long term measure to improve fodder supply, the Department of Animal Husbandry and Dairying is promoting quality seeds and entrepreneurs in fodder production.
Agriculture Secretaries and Animal Husbandry and Dairying Secretaries from Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthan, Gujarat, Punjab, Haryana, Madhya Pradesh, West Bengal, Bihar, Jharkhand, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Karnataka, Uttarkhand, and Himachal Pradesh governments attended the hour-long review meeting virtually.
Representatives of Union Agriculture Ministry, Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR) and Indian Institute of Grassland and Fodder Research ((IGFR) were also present. PTI LUX RAM
Source : Auto generated feed from PTI