Agri exports surge 22% in April-November

Exports of agricultural and processed food products, promoted by Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (APEDA), increased 22.1 per cent to $15.03 billion during the April-November period of the current fiscal. This is against shipments to the tune of $12.31 billion in the year-ago period, even as commodities such as fresh fruits, flowers, dairy products, guar gum, non-Basmati rice, wheat and cashew reported even higher growth.

There was a big jump in exports during November with the shipments registering 56 per cent growth at $3.38 billion from $2.16 billion year-ago.

Apeda Chairman M Angamuthu said: “The growth of agriculture and food exports in 2021 was exceedingly well with the promotion of new products and set a strong foundation to thrive during pandemic. We shall strive to promote agriculture and food exports with the objective of becoming global leader in this segment in 2022.

“The socially conscious theme of promoting natural and organic agriculture products exports, increasing farm income and encouraging traditional products and supporting food security of low income countries shall be central and guiding principle in the export promotion of agriculture and food products.”

Non-Basmati rice exports in April-November of the fiscal increased by 46.3 per cent to $3.9 billion, while Basmati rice shipments dropped 22.7 per cent to $ 2.06 billion. In terms of volume, non-Basmati rice shipments surged by 53.5 per cent to 10.9 million tonnes (mt), while Basmati exports fell by 21.2 per cent to 2.4 mt.

Price realisation

The price realisation in non-Basmati rice declined to $359/tonne from $376/tonne and that of Basmati rice to $860/tonne from $877/tonne.

“Actually, the Basmati price has moved up for the fresh crop to about $890-900/tonne in November as against $800-805/tonne year-ago,” said an exporter. In terms of quantity, Basmati exports have dropped 21.4 per cent while there was 13.1 per cent fall in terms of value during November.

“The greater disruption in supplying countries to global market has provided this additional market to us. The momentum is required to be preserved and sustained by way of enabling product and market specific strategies. India has been away in few important export distribution channels in particular retail chains, which could create access in value-added segment,” said trade policy analyst S Chandrasekaran. Basmati, as a brand, requires to move from commodity to niche in order to increase its value, he said.

Fresh fruits and wheat

During April-November, exports of fresh fruits increased by 31.2 per cent to $ 397 million, floriculture products by 39.7 per cent to $68 million, dairy products by 68.6 per cent to $ 315 million, guar gum by 60 per cent to $ 258 million and cashew by 24.7 per cent to $ 305 million.

Wheat exports surged more than five times to $1.15 billion in the eight months to November as India entered new markets such as Yemen, Afghanistan, Qatar and Indonesia, besides strengthening its position in Bangladesh (largest share in FY21), Nepal, Afghanistan, Sri Lanka and United Arab Emirates.