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LAHORE: Punjab may miss cotton sowing target for the year 2022-23 by around 340,000 acres as the provincial agriculture department is expecting that it will be sown over an area of slightly over 3.6 million acres of land against the target of 4 million acres.

According to the sowing position survey of cotton area 2022-23, the Crop Reporting Survey (CRS) wing of the Punjab Agriculture Department by June 01, 2022, the area brought under cotton sowing was 3.583 million acres against the target of 4 million acres. The department has also expressed the expected area under cotton sowing will be at 3.645 million acres by June 30, 2022 when the survey will be completed.

The CRS report, however, said that 98.3 per cent of the expected area under sowing of cotton was achieved in the province by June 01, 2022 and breakup of it reveal that 97.7 per cent of the expected area was achieved in North Punjab and 98.3 per cent of the expected area crop sowing this year was achieved in South Punjab.

Director General Agriculture (Extension) Dr Anjum Ali Buttar while talking to Business Recorder on Friday confirmed that cotton sowing in the province would fell short against the target area which might also make difficult to achieve the production target of 6.6 million bales of the white gold crop.

He, however, said that the figures may reach 3.7 million acres by the time final figures would be tabulated as in some areas growers took the advantage of heavy pre-monsoon rains by re-sowing the crop on their land. Last year 2021-22, he said the total area brought under cotton cultivation was 3.161 million acres of land.

While talking about the major reason in not achieving the targeted sowing area despite good price of cotton during the last season, Dr Anjum said severe heat wave and unprecedented water shortage experienced by the country due to climate change at the time of sowing (March onward) were the main reasons behind shortfall in cotton sowing area.

As per the CRS data, Sargodha Division is expected to bring 111,000 acres of land under sowing of cotton, Faisalabad Division 63,000 acres, 3,000 acres in Kasur (Lahore Division), 72,000 acres of land in Sahiwal Division, 1.017 million acres of land in Multan, 727,000 acres of land in DG Khan and 1.653 million acres of land is expected to be brought under the cotton sowing in Bahawalpur Division.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2022

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