Chana or chickpea is an important pulse crop of India and is a rich source of protein and used as edible seed and also for making flour. It is highly nutritious and ranks third amongst important legumes after dry bean and peas. Two types of chana like desi and kabuli are being cultivated across the globe.
Among the total chana production in the world, desi type contributes to 80% while rest is of kabuli type. It is well grown in sandy and loam soils with low temperatures during nights. It requires dry weather during the day and sensitive to rainfall. Heavy rains during growth stage leads to excessive vegetative growth and it may not give good yields.
The world chana production has remained stagnant over the last decade between 8 to 9 million tonnes, while the area under cultivation is hovering around 10 to 12 million hectares. India is the world’s largest producer, consumer and importer of pulses and accounts for 27% of the global pulses production. The other major producing countries are Pakistan, Australia, Turkey, Iran and Myanmar.
More than 90% of chana is consumed by the countries producing it. During last couple of years, world chana production has marginally increased due to increase in production in India and Australia.
India is the biggest producer of chana with 7.05 Million tonnes (approx.) of production in 2008-09.India contributes around 64% to the global chana output. Despite being the major producer of chana, India is the net importer of chana. India imports nearly 20% of the world imports of chana, closely followed by Pakistan (18%), Bangladesh (9%) and Spain (8%).
On the exports side, India exports 20% of the world exports, closely followed by Australia (20%), Mexico (12%) and Myanmar (10%).
Major producing states are Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh, Rajasthan and Karnataka. Major trading centers of chana in India are Indore (Madhya Pradesh), Latur (Maharashtra), Akola (Maharashtra), Bikaner (Rajasthan) and Delhi.
Factors influencing Chana prices
- Rainfall during monsoon season and soil moisture
- Weather factors during winter season (unseasonal rains may damage the crop)
- Area and production in major producing states like Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh and Rajasthan
- Arrival pattern from February till April
- Demand from stockiest, mills and retail demand
- Government policies – export/import, duties, stock limits and other restrictions
- Import of pulses and chana by Government and private agencies
- Output in Australia and Canada