The May-June 2022 issue of Rice India is in your hands. This two month period was another tough period for our trade. The early part was ripe with rumours of wheat exports being banned by Government of India but simultaneously similar rumour first went on air about rice exports too being banned and then came a surprise rumour of Basmati rice being banned. We remained in constant touch with concerned authorities and tried to instil confidence in trade that these are merely rumours and not the real occurrence to be expected. This was primarily because with monsoon expected to be good and crop expectation also being good, but what is worrying us again is resurgence of similar rumours about rice now. Although I must confess that Basmati rice being a non-PDS item Government may not be considering, if at all, any such move. As for non-basmati rice, FCI stocks are overflowing and Government is not likely to extend the free distribution of rice to around 80 Cr people which was a food availability move taken during the peak of Covid pandemic and will now be available till 30th September, 2022. So with new crop coming in from October onwards the supply situation is only likely to improve and so would be surpluses for export. But for the moment, we can but only keep our fingers crossed and follow wait and watch.
The export statistics received from DGCIS till May, 2022 reveal that in overall terms Basmati rice export during April-May 22 is down by 6.05% compared to same period of 2021. Similarly there have been lower exports to every region during this period which is a cause of concern.
AIREA engaged a pesticide expert to guide on the various pesticide related issues in the global market faced by Indian Basmati rice. His expertise will be utilized to devise appropriate strategies for addressing the burning issue of residues of pesticides that has been haunting the trade for almost a decade now.
The GST Council held its 47th meeting on 28th and 29th June, 2022 in Chandigarh. Although the formal detailed notification will come out in early July it is understood that applicability of the new regime will be from 18th July, 2022. The 5% GST is now being made applicable to all pre-packaged and pre labelled rice for retail use in accordance with definition given in Legal Metrology rules.
APEDA has identified M/s Lead Connect for the Basmati Crop Survey for 2022-23 Kharif season and they are soon going to commence work. AIREA Secretariat has discussed with APEDA and the Agency that prior to starting work in an area , they will have discussions with trade member to come to a common understanding on the survey for better results.
During the last two months, we have flagged the important issues of concern with chairman, APEDA, Joint Secretary, DoC, NPPO , Ministry of Health, Ministry of Agriculture and FSSAI. Two meetings were held with Chairman, APEDA and one with JS-DoC. The major concern area has been rectification of residue norms of FSSAI. Further follow up is being continued.
Now that the sowing season has already commenced, we wish good monsoons and favourable climatic conditions will give a fillip to the new crop and we will have better trade scenario during the current financial year.
With sincere regards.
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