Rising cost of production: Farmers have cultivated wheat but there is neither urea nor rains

Rising cost of production: Farmers have cultivated wheat but there is neither urea nor rains


No one knows who is responsible to regulate the market

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LAHORE (Web Desk) – Farmers are still helpless despite the repeated promises made by government at the highest level as hoarders and profiteers continue taking advantage of the “supply and demand” by creating an artificial shortage of fertilizers, especially urea and DAP, across Pakistan, resulting in skyrockiting, resulting in skyrocketing fertiliser prices.

Protests have been held in different parts of the country, including Sindh amid unavailability of the essential agri inputs at a time when the country is grappling with the rising food prices, responsible for worsening the cost-living crisis by fuelling and sustaining inflation.

This alarming situation, which has become a routine matter, also raises serious questions about the government’s strategy to ensure food security in Pakistan where millions of people been pushed into poverty even since inflation got out of control.

Read more: Climate change means poverty for many. Is Pakistan ready to address the challenge?

Reports coming out of Bahawalnagar, Burewala, Vehari and other parts of Pakistan show that traders have still been charging exuberant urea prices because the farmers are at their mercy after planting the wheat crop, the main staple food in our country.

Read more: Food security: Urea, DAP are missing after wheat sowing as vegetable prices remain untamed

With the rising cost of production, it is obvious that the food inflation will remain high in foreseeable future which is going to only translate into food insecurity.

No one knows how Pakistan is going to address the challenge given the prevailing economic crisis and the devastating effects of climate change or global warming.

Rainfall is already well-below normal this season as Pakistan hasn’t witnessed a strong westerly, bringing rains and snowfall to the country. That’s why the country is experiencing above-average temperatures, meaning that the wheat and other seasonal crops would be adversely affected, if there are no sufficient rains in the coming days and weeks.

It is worth noting that Christmas – December 25 – is associated worldwide with white-coated mountains, rooftops and roads. But the mountainous regions in Pakistan haven’t received any meaningful snow yet.

Poh – a month of the local Indian calendar – starts on December 14 and ends on January 12. It is the coldest month of the year with heaviest snowfall and days of dark clouds covering the skies.

One also wonders why the government fails every year to plan and stock through timely imports sufficient supply of urea and DAP, which would have meant absence of any excuse for creating the prevailing artificial shortage.


As far as the rain-fed areas area concerned, the crop growth and quality very much upon depend upon precipitation from sowing to harvesting. Obviously, rainfall is the only source to ensure the desired level of soil moisture. Pakistan produces around 10 per cent of its wheat crop in the regions that do not have irrigation system.

When it comes to Punjab, Sindh and others areas served by the irrigation system [or by tube-wells], absence of rains in December does not have much effects on crop, says an agriculturist.

But he added that at least one or two good rain spells in January were necessary to obtain a good crop yield – followed by more in February and March.

He was referring to the fact that grain quality requires regular rains [with intervals] even in the irrigated areas. Otherwise, wheat – although not a water-intensive crop – production may reduce by a large margin.

Meanwhile, fertilizer use also require soil moisture. In rain-fed areas, it means rains – not the case for irrigated lands either by canal water or through tube-wells.