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Plans afoot to forecast crop output every month

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NEW DELHI: The government plans to forecast crop output and yield every month to get regular predictive analysis on the likely demand-supply situation and its impact on prices. The current system of preparing forecasts every four months is inadequate, said officials. Often, prices of sensitive farm commodities start rising, leaving the government no time or opportunity to quickly balance the market, they said.

Last year, for instance, onion prices started rising rapidly as floods severely damaged the crop, but it was too late for the authorities to act because it takes a long time for imports to be contracted, shipped and provided to vendors and retailers.

The government will use an econometric model based real time information system, which uses variables such as rainfall, soil moisture, temperature, prices, water level in reservoirs and past practices to forecast yields and output of various crops. Officials said that the new system of predictive analysis would give a reasonably accurate picture, with a deviation of 5-10%.


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