Agriculture World

APMCs in Maharashtra Face Losses after Free Inter-state Trade of Agricultural Products

Nikita Arya
Nikita Arya

Amid the economic crisis propelled by the nationwide lockdown, the central government had been considerate enough to give few concessions to the farmers across the nation by making adjustments in the activities. For instance, it introduced an ordinance permitting farmers and buyers to trade freely in agricultural produce across the nation. But Agriculture Produce Market Committees (APMCs) in Maharashtra is likely to suffer due to this ordinance.  

According to senior officials of the Maharashtra State Agriculture Marketing Board (MSAMB), Maharashtra’s APCs are likely to witness a drop of 30-40% in their income after the free inter-state trade of agricultural produce. With this ordinance, APMCs might have to face deduction in their income of about Rs 120-Rs 150 crores, as per sources.  

In Maharashtra, there are a total of 305 APMC mandis, which have an annual turnover of Rs 50,000 crore. Of this annual turnover, fruits and vegetables account for Rs 20,000 crore while food grains, pulses, and oilseeds account for another Rs 20,000 crore. The remaining Rs 10,000 crores are from spices, raisins, bamboo, and other local produce. Talking about the income of APMC, it comes from the cess which ranges from 0.5% to 1% of the trade value of the commodities, which comes up to Rs 350 crore on an average, as per sources. 

According to the officials, despite delisting some fruits and vegetables, farmers continue to prefer to sell within the purview of the mandis. However, there could be a difference in revenues as farmers will have more time to bargain and sell their products because the food grains, pulses, and oilseeds are non-perishable. 

Officials also indicated that two sets of laws will now be implemented for the same agricultural produce, which will give farmers multiple choices. With this, a farmer can now opt to sell in the APMC or mandi and be prepared to pay the market cess and commission, porting, and weighing charges. 

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