The world’s food supply may face a threat from India’s side as the country is facing a lack of rain in its different regions. The shortage of rain in the country has caused the rice planting regions to shrink to the smallest in three years. India is the world’s largest exporter of rice, and this threat in terms of rice production came at a time when some countries are facing surging inflation and unaffordable food costs.
Threat To Rice Plantation In India
Lack of rainfall in different regions including West Bengal and Uttar Pradesh has caused the rice plantation areas to shrink about 13% so far. Now, traders are worried about the current condition as they think that this may complicate the inflation situation even more and will result in restrictions on exports. This move will trouble billions across the globe as India alone is responsible for 40 per cent of the world’s rice trade. Moreover, the Government already had restricted the exports of sugar and wheat to stabilise the inflated prices at home.
“The jump in India’s rice prices reflects concern about output. Prices of some varieties have soared more than 10% in the past two weeks in major growing states such as West Bengal, Odisha and Chhattisgarh due to deficient rain and increased demand from Bangladesh,” asserted Mukesh Jain, director of a rice shipping company, Sponge Enterprises Pvt.
“Export prices may climb to $400 a ton by September from as much as $365 now on a free-on-board basis,” further said.
“Farmers are less upbeat. Rajesh Kumar Singh, 54, a grower in Uttar Pradesh, said he planted rice on only half of his seven acres (2.8 hectares) of land due to a lack of rain in June and July. ‘The situation is really precarious, “ he said.
“Rice prices are feeling the pressure, said Himanshu, a professor at Jawaharlal Nehru University, who goes by only one name. Rarely any sowing happens after mid-July, so the hope that it will recover is unlikely to be the case,” Himanshu said.
India’s Rice Export Stats For World’s Food Supply
India is responsible for supplying rice to over 100 countries, and some of its giant customers are “Bangladesh, China, Nepal and some Middle Eastern countries”.
If we take a look at the rice exports stats for the years 2021-22, then:
- India contributed 22m tons.
- The US exported 3m tons.
- Vietnam and Thailand provided 7m tons each.
- Pakistan- 5m tons
- Other countries combined exported 12m tons.