FCI to test age of rice before procurement

FCI to test age of rice before procurement

Among key features, the 'Mera Ration' app also allowed migrant beneficiaries to register their migration details before starting their journey

Representative image. Credit: iStock photo.

In a bid to check the re-cycling of rice by millers, the Centre plans to test the age of rice before procurement by the Food Corporation of India and other agencies.

The age testing of rice was already being carried out in Andhra Pradesh where procurement agencies were following the process to ensure that the crop they were purchasing was from the current crop year.

According to Food Secretary Sudhanshu Pandey, some states were procuring more rice than that was harvested by farmers in the state raising doubts about the re-circulation of the paddy by rice mills.

Pandey said the rice production in Punjab was pegged at 181 lakh metric tonnes, but the state ended up procuring 203 lakh metric tonnes of rice this Kharif marketing season.

“Either the excess rice came from neighbouring states or it could be an issue of aggregation,” he said adding that rice millers tend to sell excess rice to procurement agencies the following year.

Pandey also launched a mobile app 'Mera Ration' for ration cardholders, particularly migrant beneficiaries, that can be used for identifying the nearest fair price shop, check details of entitlement and recent transactions.

The android-based mobile application, developed by the National Informatics Centre (NIC), is currently in Hindi and English and would soon be made available in 14 languages.

Among key features, the 'Mera Ration' app also allowed migrant beneficiaries to register their migration details before starting their journey and the system will automatically allocate the entitled foodgrains at their specified destination.