Friday, Nov 2
Traders have contracted 8,000-10,000 tn sesame seed for import in the last three-four weeks as estimates of sharp fall in local output triggered stocking of the oilseed ahead of peak consumption period during winter, trade sources said.“Recent deals for import of red sesame seed from Sudan were struck in a range of $1,440-$1,500 per tn, CIF (cost-insurance-freight) basis at Mundra port (in Gujarat),” a Rajkot-based oilseed importer said, adding deliveries will commence from later this month.According to Indian Oilseeds and Produce Export Promotion Council India’s sesame seed crop in the bygone kharif season is likely to fall 57% on year to 177,936 tn due to adverse weather in major growing states. “Untimely or erratic and concentrated rainfall in some key growing areas, particularly in Uttar Pradesh, has significantly reduced the harvestable area in comparison with the actual sown area,” said Suresh Ramrakhiani, chief executive officer of the council.Apart from Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat and Rajasthan are major producers of sesame seed in India.Lower supply is already reflected in sesame seed price which has risen to 140 rupees a kg currently from 100 rupees five-six weeks ago, while prices overseas have shot up by $225-$250 per tn during this period.India imports sesame seed largely from Sudan and Nigeria. Currently, imports are also coming from Pakistan and Ethiopia in small quantities, traders said.A prominent sesame seed broker in Ahmedabad said imports are likely to rise in the short term to meet peak consumption season of Nov-Mar as domestic supply is extremely tight due to negligible carryover stock and lower kharif output. “In the current oilseed year (Oct-Sep) India’s sesame seed imports can rise at least 40% from previous year’s 60,000-65,000 tn,” the Ahmedabad-based broker said.