Amid expectations of normal rain, the government on Thursday approved a hike of Rs60 in paddy support price (MSP) to Rs1,310 per quintal in order to encourage farmers to grow more in the ongoing kharif season.
The government also increased the minimum support price (MSP) of pulses and oilseeds by up to Rs 450 and Rs 320 per quintal, to boost ouput and reduce import dependence.
"The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) has approved MSPs of kharif crops for 2013-14 crop year (July-June) as proposed by the Agriculture Ministry," a source said after the CCEA meeting in New Delhi.
While MSP for common paddy has been raised to Rs 1,310 from Rs 1,250 per quintal, the support price of grade 'A' variety of paddy has been hiked by Rs 65 to Rs1,345/quintal.
Sowing of paddy, the main kharif crop, begins with the onset of monsoon in June and harvesting starts in October.
The normal monsoon forecast by the Met Department for this year, coupled with hike in MSP, is expected to boost paddy area and productivity.
In 2012, there was drought in four states leading to fall in foodgrains production by four million tonnes to little over 255 million tonnes.
CCEA also approved Rs 100 hike in cotton MSP to Rs 3,700 per quintal (medium staple) and Rs 4,000 per quintal (long staple).
In pulses category, the MSP of tur has been raised by Rs 450 to Rs 4,300 per quintal, while that of moong by Rs 100 to Rs 4,500 per quintal.
The ministry had recommended no change in urad MSP at Rs 4,300 per quintal for this year.
In the oilseeds category, CCEA approved a hike of Rs 300 in the MSP of soyabean (black) to Rs 2,500 a quintal; Rs 320 rise in MSP of soyabean (yellow) to Rs 2,560 per quintal.
The MSP of sesamum stands increased by Rs 300 per quintal at Rs 4,500. The support prices of sunflower seed and nigerseed have been kept unchanged at Rs 3,700 per quintal and Rs 3,500 per quintal, respectively.