Cotton production in Gujarat, the largest producer of the natural fibre in India, is expected to fall to the lowest since 2008-19, largely on account of a decline in per hectare yield following scanty rainfall in cotton growing regions of the state.
The latest crop estimate by the Cotton Association of India (CAI) puts production in Gujarat at 82.5 lakh bales (one bale is 170kg) in 2018-19. Production was 105 lakh bales in 2017-18.
The per hectare yield in Gujarat is projected to fall to 532kg in 2018-19, from 619kg in the previous year.
Of the projected output, 61 lakh bales have already arrived in the market.
Data from the state agriculture department shows that cotton acreage in Gujarat increased to 27.12 lakh hectare in 2018-19 from 26.02 lakh hectare in 2017-18.
Lower production in Gujarat has also brought down overall production in India, which is also estimated to hit a one-decade low at 321 lakh bales in 2018-19 against 365 lakh bales the previous year.