India leads around the globe in terms of production and consumption of pulses. India’s exports of pulses rose by 73% to $476 million between April and January.
Given the continuously rising demand for chickpeas and lentils from nations that are pulses importers like China, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), and Bangladesh, India’s pulses exports for the fiscal year are likely to set a new record.
India’s Pulses Production
According to the second advance estimates for 2022–2023, India’s production of pulses is predicted to reach a record 278.10 lakh tonnes (lt), up from 273.02 lt, the previous year. The production of chana and moong, which set a record, is largely responsible for the record output of pulses, whereas the production of tur and urad was negatively impacted by bad weather in different regions of the nation. For these pulses, the government has allowed to continue to import tur and import urad till March 2024 to keep their prices in check.
The second advance estimates predict that chana production will reach a record 136.32 lt (up from 135.44 lt last year), while moong production will reach a record 35.45 lt (up from 31.66 lt).
APEDA chairman, M Angamuthu, mentioned “with rising preferences for vegetarian and vegan foods globally and with India being the largest producer of varieties of pulses, we can cater to the increasing global demand for pulses.”
India’s Pulses Exports
Pulses exports increased by 80% in volume from April to January of the current fiscal year, reaching 5.39 lt. Exports were 3 lt during the same time period a year ago. Exports of pulses from April to January totaled $476 million, a 73% increase from the same period last year’s $275 million. According to the most recent APEDA data, exports increased by 85% to reach Rs. 3,784 crore (from Rs. 2,048 crore). Pulses exported totaled 4.1 lt in the fiscal year 2021–2022 and were worth $379 million.
A Few Proclamations
According to Bimal Kothari, Chairman, India Pulses and Grains Association (IPGA), the apex trade body, “There’s a lot of demand for Indian pulses, especially desi chickpea, kabuli chana, and lentils among others from countries such as Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and Nepal”. He further mentioned that the demand for Indian pulses from countries such as the US, Canada and the UK is largely driven by expatriates.
Punit Bachhawat, an Ahmedabad miller who supplies to exporters, said, “Exports of the country’s chana are up due to the demand from Bangladesh and Nepal, while the demand for tur dal is mainly from Gulf countries.” Additionally, Bangladesh, which formerly imported from Australia, has a strong demand for masoor (lentils). According to Bachhawat, Bangladesh is purchasing more lentils from India this year due to crop damage in Australia and a strong demand for Ramadan.
According to Rahul Chauhan of IGrain India, the demand for chickpea (kabuli chana), desi chickpea, and lentils is what is causing a rise in pulse exports. He claimed that other types of pulses, including pigeon pea (tur), black matpe (urad), and moong, have seen a decline.
He also stated, “Lentil exports have more than doubled to around 43,784 tonnes during the April-November period this fiscal against 20,891 tonnes a year ago. Similarly, the exports of kabuli chana have increased to 85,661 tonnes during April-Dec when compared with 45,691 tonnes in 2021-22. Exports of desi chickpea have increased to 68,808 tonnes during April-December compared to 50,773 tonnes a year ago.”
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