Agriculture has been a silver lining for Maharashtra. The sector has shown a positive growth of 11.7% in 2020-21 despite the COVID-19 pandemic. According to the Economic Survey, during the kharif season of 2020-21, sowing was completed on 156.64 lakh hectares. The production of cereals will increase by 60%, pulses by 14%, oilseeds by 28%, cotton by 33% and sugarcane by 40% over the previous years.
During the rabi season (by the end of December, 2020), sowing was completed on 53.64 lakh hectares. The production of cereals is expected to increase by 1% and pulses by 12%. However, the production of oilseeds is expected to decrease by 18% over the previous year. The area under horticulture crops is 19.20 lakh hectares and production is expected to be 278.75 lakh metric tonnes (MT) during 2019-20.
The consumption of chemical fertilisers in the state for 2020-21 is anticipated to be 78.10 lakh MT with a per hectare consumption of 144.9 kgs. The fertiliser consumption for the year 2019-20 was 61.33 lakh MT, which was 113 kgs per hectare.
Since the inception of Mahatma Jyotirao Phule Shetkari Karj Mukti Yojana, 2019, benefit of Rs 19,847 crore has been given to 31.04 lakh beneficiary farmers up to January, 2021. During 2020-21, the annual target for agriculture and allied activities sector in the annual plan was Rs 93,626 crore. Up to December 2020, crop loans of Rs 40,515 crore were disbursed through financial institutions against Rs 28,604 crore in 2019-20. Up to September 2020, agricultural term loans of Rs 30,014 crore were disbursed as against Rs 34,427 crore in 2019-20.