India has enough edible oil stock: Govt

NEW DELHI: The government on Sunday claimed that India has optimum stock of all edible oils. Quoting industry sources, it said the present stock of all edible oils in the country is approximately 21 lakh tonnes and another 12 lakh tonnes is in transit.

]These will arrive this month. It said on the oilseeds front, the second advance estimate released by the agriculture ministry in February shows a very positive picture of soyabean production for 20221-22 at 126 lakh tonnes, which is higher than last year’s production of 112 lakh tonnes.

As a result of higher sowing of mustard seeds by 37% in all major producing states including Rajasthan in comparison with last year, the production may increase to 114 lakh tonnes in 2021-22 crop season. The food ministry said it is monitoring the price and availability situation and meetings are held regularly with major edible oil processing associations to discuss further reduction in the domestic edible oil prices and MRP to give relief to consumers.

Palm oil — crude and refined — constitutes roughly around 62% of the total edible oils imported and these are imported mainly from Indonesia and Malaysia, while soyabean oil of around 22% share is imported from Argentina and Brazil. Sunflower oil, which has around 15% of the import basket comes mainly from Ukraine and Russia.

“International prices of edible oils are under pressure due to a shortfall in global production and increase in export tax/levies by the exporting countries. India is one of the largest producers of oilseeds in the world and this sector occupies an important position in the agricultural economy, accounting for the estimated production of 37.14 million tonnes of nine cultivated oilseeds during the 2021-22 as per the second Advance Estimates released by the Department of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare,” the food ministry said.