The Central government recently raised the minimum support price (MSP) of kharif crops for the 2022-23 crop year (July-June) by around 4-9 per cent.


About Kharif crops

  • The crops that are sown in the rainy season are called Kharif crops and it is also known as the summer or monsoon crop in India. The crops that are sown in the winter season are called Rabi crops.
  • Kharif crops are usually sown with the beginning of the first rains in July, during the south-west monsoon season.
  • The sowing time may vary in the different states of India as it depends on the arrival of monsoon. For example, in southern states like Kerala, the seeds are usually sown towards the end of May and in northern states like Punjab, Haryana the seeds are sown in the month of June. These crops are dependent on the quantity of rainwater as well as its timing. Harvesting takes place in the months of September or October.


Common Kharif crops

  • Cereal crops — Rice, Bajra, Jowar, Maize (corn), Millet and Soyabean
  • Fruit crops — Muskmelon, Sugarcane, Watermelon, Orange
  • Seed/Grain crops — Arhar (tur), Black gram (urad), Cotton, Cowpea, Green gram (moong), Groundnut, Guar, Moth bean, Mung bean, Sesame, Urad bean
  • Vegetable crops — Bitter gourd (karela), Bottle gourd, Brinjal, Chilli, Ladyfingers, Sponge Gourd, Tinda, Tomato, Turmeric, French beans


About Rabi crops

  • The crops that are sown in the winter season are called Rabi crops and it is also known as the winter crop in India and Pakistan.
  • Rabi crops are usually sown in October or November.
  • Rabi crops are cultivated in the dry season so timely irrigation is required to grow these crops.
  • Harvesting takes place in the months of March or April.


Common Rabi crops

  • Cereal crops — Barley, Gram, Rapeseed, Mustard, Oat, Wheat and Bajra
  • Fruit crops — Almond, Banana, Ber, Dates, Grapes, Guava, Kinnow, Lemon/Citrus, Mangoes, Mulberries, Orange
  • Legumes/lentils (dal) crops — Chickpea, Lobias, Masoor, Mung bean, Pigeon pea, Toria, Uradbean
  • Seed/grain crops — Alfalfa, Coriander, Cumin, Fenugreek, Linseed mustard, Isabgol, Sunflower, Bengal gram, Red gram


Minimum Support Price (MSP)

  • In 1966-67, as a part of extensive agricultural reforms, MSP was introduced for the first time by the Central Government.
  • Minimum support price (MSP) is a “minimum price for any crop that the Government considers as remunerative for farmers and hence deserving of “support”.
  • It is also the price that Government agencies pay whenever they procure the particular crop from the farmers.
  • It is a way of protecting the farmers in India from the uncertainties of the markets as well as those of the natural kind.
  • There is currently no statutory backing for these prices, nor any law mandating their enforcement.


Crops covered under MSP

  • At present, the Central Government sets MSP for 23 crops.
  • These include —
      • 7 cereals (bajra, wheat, maize, paddy barley, ragi and jowar);
      • 5 pulses (tur, chana, masur, urad and moong);
      • 7 oilseeds (safflower, mustard, niger seed, soyabean, groundnut, sesame and sunflower);
      • 4 commercial crops (raw jute, cotton, copra and sugarcane).