Indian crop sowings progress
Rice sowings in India this year are 6.8% higher than the sowing at the same time last year, reports the Ministry of Agriculture. So far this year, some 25.1 million ha of rice has been planted, compared with 23.5 million ha at the same time last year. The total area planted with coarse grains is lower at 16.4 million ha, compared with 18.8 million ha last year, although rain in most parts of the country during the first week of August caused the gap to decrease. Oilseeds have been sown on 15.6 million ha, the same as last year; cotton on 8.1 million ha, down 10.6%, sugarcane on 4.5 million ha, down 16.8%; and pulses on 7.8 million ha, down 15.9%. The Indian government had planned to expand the area of pulses by 4.5 million ha between 2007 and 2012, by intercropping with other crops and using fallow land in rice-growing areas ( Agrow No 527, p 27).