MUMBAI - India's rapeseed mustard production in 2018/19 could jump nearly 17 percent from a year ago to 7 million tonnes as higher prices are likely to prompt farmers to expand areas under planting, a leading Indian edible oil importer said.
"Mustard crop can grow to 7 million tonnes," said Sudhakar Desai, chief executive officer of Emami Agrotech, up from 6 million tonnes in the same period a year earlier.
"The government is supporting farmers by buying the seeds at mandated price, by raising import taxes on edible oils," said Desai, speaking on the sidelines of the Globoil India conference.
Rapeseed mustard is the main winter-sown oilseed in India. Higher rapeseed production could help the world's biggest buyer of edible oil in limiting the overseas purchases: India imports about two-thirds of its edible oil demand.
In the next marketing year, starting Nov. 1, Desai said Emami Agrotech plans to raise imports of palm oil to 1.3 million tonnes from 1.1 million tonnes in the current marketing year.