In response to escalating rice prices, the Government of India has unveiled the ‘Bharat’ brand rice, aiming to address market volatility and ensure affordability for consumers. he rice will be available in 5- and 10-kg packs at ₹29 per kg through cooperatives such as Nafed, NCCF, and Kendriya Bhandar.
Essential Commodities Act Imposed to Regulate Prices
Despite previous attempts to lower rice prices through negotiations with rice millers, the government’s efforts remained unsuccessful. Consequently, the Essential Commodities Act has been invoked to compel traders to declare their rice stocks every Friday on a designated portal, starting February 9. This measure aims to gather data on rice stock positions to determine whether further interventions, such as stock limits, are necessary.
Allocation of Rice to Cooperatives for Retail Sale
To stabilize the market, the government has allocated 5 lakh tonnes of rice to cooperatives for retail sale in the initial phase. Additional quantities will be released based on demand, with plans to involve e-commerce platforms in the distribution of ‘Bharat’ rice.
Quality Control Measures for ‘Bharat Rice’
To maintain quality standards, cooperatives have been instructed to ensure that the rice packed under the ‘Bharat’ brand contains less than 5 per cent broken grains. This measure not only enhances consumer satisfaction but also increases the availability of broken rice for alternative uses like ethanol production.
Stock Declaration Mandate for Rice Traders
Traders, processors, and retailers across all states and union territories are mandated to declare their rice stock positions on a designated portal within seven days and subsequently every Friday. This initiative aims to encourage the timely release of rice stocks into the market, thereby mitigating price escalations.
Export Regulations and Market Dynamics
The government has implemented various export regulations, including export duties and minimum export prices, to manage rice exports effectively. Despite these measures, the export of parboiled rice has seen only a marginal decline, indicating the resilience of global market forces.
The introduction of the ‘Bharat’ brand rice and associated regulatory measures underscore the government’s proactive stance in addressing price volatility and ensuring food security.
Important Questions Related to Exams
1. What is the price of ‘Bharat’ brand rice sold by the Government of India?
2. What is the weight range of the packs in which ‘Bharat’ rice is available?
3. Which government body is responsible for monitoring rice stocks through a designated portal?
Kindly share your responses in the comment section.