{plusone} Press release 18/1/2014

Finger millet, more commonly known as ragi or nachani, is a cereal widely grown in the African and Asian continents. Native of the Ethiopian highlands, this crop is quite easy to grow at altitudes higher than usual. It is used as a major substitute for rice among the diabetic patients and also the diet conscious people. It is one of the few cereals that needn’t be polished making it healthier than its counterparts. 


More than 80 per cent of the crop is grown as Kharif season. In 2012-13 India produced 19.29 lakh tonnes of ragi from 13.07 lakh hectares with an average productivity of 1641 kg per hectare. Karnataka is the highest producer of ragi in India, contributing to 67 per cent of the country’s production followed by Tamil Nadu (11%), Uttarakhand (9%) and Maharashtra (7%). Tamil Nadu is having the highest productivity of 2731 kgs per hectare as major portion is grown under irrigated conditions. In Karnataka the area under the crop was 8.34 lakh hectares leading to a production of 13.07 lakh tonnes in 2012-13. Ragi from India is exported to Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia and Srilanka. Export demand for ragi exists all round the year. Prices of ragi peak during June–November before a slide in December–January. And the bumper production – both in Karnataka and Tamil Nadu this year, could push the price to lower side.

To help the farmers in taking a right decision on whether to sell or store ragi after harvesting, the NAIP – Market Intelligence Center of the University of Agricultural Sciences, Bangalore collected data on ragi prices from Hassan market for the last twelve years & econometric analysis was conducted to predict the prices of ragi for the next three months. The results of the analysis revealed that the prices are expected to hover around Rs. 1500-1600 per quintal during January-February 2014 and Rs.1550-1650 during March-April 2014. Prices are unlikely to increase during the forecast period.

Considering the importance of the crop the government has fixed Rs.1500 as support price plus 300 as incentive for 2013-14. Hence, farmers are advised not to store ragi in anticipation of higher prices.

Research team

Dr.C.P.Gracy, Jyoti Naik, Nagashree,N.

Department of Agricultural marketing co-operation and business Management

UAS, GKVK, Bangalore-65