Soybean meal exports during April 2018 to March 2019 has risen by 28.56 % to 24.35 lakh tonne. Exports were 18.94 lakh tonne in the same period of previous year.
According to the data released by the Soybean Processors Association of India (SOPA), this year total exports will remain high. By the end of the season,total exports are likely to touch 20 lakh tonne as the country had a good crop last year. The total carry forward stock from the previous year comes upto 0.19 lakh tonne with total production coming upto 74.71 lakh tonne.
Around 20 lakh tonne is expected to be exported while 6 lakh tonne would be used as food for domestic consumption and another 47 lakh tonne as feed for domestic consumption. Balance stock of soybean meal in June is 1.148 lakh tonne.
According to the data, around 101.83 lakh tonnes of soybean is available for crushing, direct use and exports. In May 2019, soybean meal exports dropped to 38000 tonne as compared to 75,265 tonne in April 2019. Iran was the main buyer for Indian soybean meal in May.
According to market reports, farmers are expected to plant more soybean this season as they received 15% higher prices at `3,800-3,900 compared to the minimum support price. “At current prices, soybeans are more lucrative than other crops. We could see shift towards soybeans from maize in Madhya Pradesh and cotton in other regions,” said DN Pathak, executive director, SOPA.
SOPA in its first survey of soybean crop for 2018-19 season has estimated the total area under soybean for the year 2018 at 108.396 lakh hectare. The area has increased by 6.83 lakh hectare (6.7%) as compared to previous year.
The area under cultivation in Maharashtra was 36.390 lakh hectare, 10% less than the government estimates of 40.433 lakh hectare. Similarly, the actual area in Rajasthan was 9.212 lakh hectare as compared to 10.112 lakh hectare given by the government. The area in Madhya Pradesh has however, increased to 54.1 00 lakh hectare in 2018 as against 50.100 lakh hectare in 2017.