Wheat procurement touches to 3.828 million tons: MinFa

Post Source: Dawn.com

ISLAMABAD: Wheat procurement campaign across the country for the year 2011-12 was in full swing as the provincial food departments and official grains procurement agency Passco has so far purchased about 3.828 million tons of wheat from the growers. An official in the Ministry of Food and Agriculture (MinFA) told APP here on Tuesday that the government would procure about 6.57 million tons of wheat to fulfill the domestic requirements as well as for keeping the strategic food reserves in the country. In Punjab about 2.16 million tons of the commodity has been procured so far as against the set targets of four million tons, he added. He informed that the Sindh province has procured about 1.17 million tons as against its set procurement target of 1.3 million tons for the year 2011-12.

Meanwhile, he said that procurement campaign was also resumed in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) and Balochistan as the provinces have so far purchased about 0.38 million tons and 0.054 million tons of wheat respectively from the growers on official fixed rates of Rs. 950 per 40 kg.

The official further said that Pakistan Agriculture Storage and Services Corporation (Passco) procured about 0.548 million tons of the commodity as against the target of 1.3 million tons.

Passco has been given the task to procure 1.3 million tons of the commodity adding that it would procure 1.26 million tons from Punjab and 0.04 million tons from Sindh, he added.

Passco has started the wheat procurement in Punjab where it has procured about 0.233 million tons of wheat from its 176 procurement centers across the province, he added.

The official further informed that Passco has established 11 procurement centers in Sindh and 14 centers in Balochistan for procuring the commodity.

It may be recalled that this year wheat crop has been sown on over 8.8 million hectares of land in the country to fulfill the domestic consumption which was 3.5 per cent less as compared to last year’s sowing.

Wheat crop has been sown on over 6.68 million hectares of land in Punjab, while in the Sindh Province about 1.08 million hectares of land are under wheat crop, he said.

In KP, the wheat crop was sown on over 0.73 million hectares and in Balochistan it was cultivated on over 0.32 million hectares.

The provincial governments in line with the federal government were providing 200 bags per farmer at an average of 10 bags per acre for small and medium growers for grains packing, he added.

The large scale farmers having land of more than 50 acres were provided 500 bags per farmer adding that when these bags would be filled by the growers they would be provided more bags.

It is pertinent to note here that the bumper wheat crop of over 24 million tons is expected during the current crop season as against 22 million tons of domestic requirements of the commodity.

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