Trade body seeks methyl bromide fumigation at Indian ports till July


Foodgrains trade body IPGA ( India Pulses and Grains Association) has demanded that the Government allow traders methyl bromide fumigation of all imported agri-commodities at Indian ports till June 2018 to ensure smooth supply.

In March, the agriculture ministry had extended till this month the deadline on exemption given to traders for fumigating all imported agri-commodities including pulses at Indian ports instead of the country of origin. India needs to import at least 3-4 million tonnes of pulses to meet the domestic demand despite record production of 22 million tonnes in last crop year.

According to the March order, the consignments of all imported agri-commodities, whose date of bill of lading in the country of export is June 30, 2017 or before will be allowed without offshore methyl bromide fumigation from those countries, which certify discontinuance of this chemical for phytosanitary measure.

"We have sincerely urged the government to allow methyl bromide fumigation at Indian ports for next one year," India Pulses and Grains Association (IPGA) Chairman Pravin Dongre said. IPGA CEO Pradeep Ghorpade said the import volumes will be affected and consignments will become costlier if methyl bromide fumigation is not allowed after this month. "It will take some time and research to find alternative to methyl bromide fumigation," he added.

"There is some research work going on for fumigation with aluminium phosphine. But it kills only live insects and that too in a week," Ghodpade said.

"It has been extended till June for all farm commodities including pulses. Till we don't have an alternative to methyl bromide, we have decided to allow fumigation methyl bromide upon arrival in India," a senior Agriculture Ministry official had said in March.

India produced a record 22.40 million tonnes of pulses in the 2016-17 crop year and imported about 6 million tonnes of pulses last fiscal, resulting in sharp fall in domestic prices and causing distress to farmers. The Centre has bought about 1.9 million tonnes of pulses, largely from local market, for its buffer stock.


Readers choice: TOP-5 articles of the month by UkrAgroConsult