Maize (Zea mays L) is one of the most widely distributed crops of the world which is cultivated in diverse agro climatic conditions of tropics, sub-tropics and temperate regions. Globally, maize is known as queen of cereals because it has the highest genetic yield potential among the cereals. Maize is utilized domestically for poultry and cattle feed, food, starch manufacturing and other industrial purposes.
Area under maize in the world accounts for 178.61 m ha with a production of 1007.47 million mt during 2014-15. USA and China accounts for more than 40 per cent of area which together contributes around 57 per cent of total world production.
Among the cereal crops in India, with annual production of around 23.67 million tonnes from 9.3 million hectares, Maize ranks third in production and contributes to 2.35% of world production with almost 5.21% share in world harvested area in 2014-15.
Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Bihar, Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh together contribute 75 per cent of area and 78 per cent of maize production in India. Karnataka produced 3.84 million tonne of maize from 1.37 million hectares in the year 2014-15.
Major markets of maize in Karnataka are Davanagere, Haveri, Belgaum and Bagalkot. The sowing period of maize in Karnataka starts from the end of May and harvesting by middle of October onwards. So, for the benefit of farmers, the NCAP, New Delhi, Network project on Market Intelligence functioning in the Department of Agricultural Marketing, Co-operation and Business Management, UAS Bangalore collected the modal prices of maize that prevailed in Davanagere market during the last eleven years and econometric analysis was carried out to predict the prices of maize for the harvesting months. Also an opinion survey of maize traders was conducted. Based on the analysis and Market survey, it is forecasted that maize would fetch a modal price of around Rs.1300-1350 per quintal during October to November, 1350-1400 Rs/qtl in December and 1400-1500 Rs/qtl in January. During 2014-15 the crop production was high in USA, Brazil and Argentina, which affected Indian exports. Maize production in Karnataka has slightly decreased in 2014-15 (3.84 m ha) compared to previous year (3.98 m ha). Also the demand from poultry sector is declining as broken rice and jowar are getting substituted in the place of maize. Keeping in view of the fact that 2014-15 crop season stocks position is unchanged compared to previous year, the prices are likely to hover around MSP during October to November and a marginal increase is expected during December to January for superior quality of maize. This forecast prevails for current market sentiments & monsoon and could vary with changes in the market situation, rainfall and government policy. Farmers are advised to take suitable marketing decisions.
Dr. M. S. Jayaram, Dr. C. P. Gracy, Dr. M. R. Girish,
R. Thejeswini and Mangala V Reddy
Department of Agricultural Marketing, Co-operation and Business Management
UAS, GKVK, Bangalore-65