17 November 1999
Cyclone devastates rice crop

THE cyclone in India late last month destroyed 3 million tonnes of rice which was to have been harvested this winter.

Orissa, the eastern state in the eye of the storm, does not expect now to harvest more than 3.5m tonnes of rice crop against 6m tonnes in the same period of 1998-99.

The devastation means India is unlikely to achieve its rice harvest target of 74.9m tonnes. Last year India had winter rice crop of 71.84m tonnes.