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Food Crop-Maize
Maize (Zea mays L) is one of the most important cereals of the world and provides more human food than any other cereal. Maize is of American origin having been domesticated about 7000 years ago. Maize provides nutrients for humans and animals and serves as a basic raw material for the production of starch, oil and protein, alcoholic beverages, food sweeteners and, more recently, fuel. Maize is high yielding, easy to process, readily digested, and costs less than other cereals. Every part of the maize plant has economic value: the grain, leaves, stalk, tassel, and cob can all be used to produce a large variety of food and nonfood products.

Geographical Conditions:Maize crop is grown in warm weather condition and it is grown in wide range of climatic
conditions. About 85% of the total acreage under maize is grown during monsoon because of the fact that the crop stops growing if the night temperature falls below 15.60 C or 600 F.

Physical and economic conditions.

Corn is grown in such widely diverse conditions-both physical and economic-that it is difficult to generalize its environmental requirements. No other cereal is cultivated under such diverse climatic conditions and none is distributed so

widely throughout the world.

Temperature:- Maize crop grows best with a temperature of 21C to 27C. Frost is injurious, and, hence, 140 consecutive frost-free days should be present. Rainfall:-Corn needs a plentiful supply of moisture throughout the growing season-an annual rainfall of 62.5 cm. to 125 cm. with a monthly occurrence of 8 cm. to 15 cm during the growing period. Soil:- Fertile well drained alluvial or red loams free from coarse materials and rich in nitrogen are the best soils for maize. Topography:- Well drained plain level topography is good for maize but it is also grown on hilly areas.

The cultivation of maize in India is characterized by inter- culture that is it is grown with other crops like pulses, vegetables and oil- seeds.

Corn grown is mainly of three types Grain or field corn, sweet corn used mainly as food Popcorn. There are four types of Grain corn: (1) Dent corn has a pronounced depression or dent at the crown of the kernels. (2) Flint corn has the hard starch layer entirely surrounding the outer part of the kernel. (3) Flour, or soft, corn contains almost entirely soft starch, with only a very thin layer of hard starch. (4) Waxy corn has a wax-like endosperm.

Many forms of maize are used for food, sometimes classified as various subspecies related to the amount of starch each had:

Flour corn Popcorn Dent corn Flint corn Sweet corn Waxy corn Amyl maize Pod corn Striped maize

Cultivation of maize in the following steps

Planting :
crop sowing when the crop is planted. In mid-April planting of maize normally is used for mid-May.

Silking :
crop cultivation is the most crucial stage. This means crop pollination.

Doughing :
When maize crop starts to show a thick substance, called crop will doughed.

Denting :
During the process, like plant material in the formation of the dough spends all its resources and to reduce the plant and 'one' break begins at end of matter is to show . The denting thus called.

Maturing :
When the green leaves of maize leaves and is gone from opening appears, the crop is said to be mature.

Collection :
crop generally is mature around 3-4 months end and then it is ready to be collected or harvested.

Production:Maize Area, Production and Yield in India have seen a phenomenal growth over the last five decades and India has emerged from being a net importer to levels of self sufficiency. In the last five decades, Indias maize production has increased from less than 3 million tons to 15 million tons today. This is because of growth in technology coupled with rising demand for the produce. Diversified uses of maize also prompted higher production in the country. Presently, in India, maize is mainly used for preparation of poultry feed and extraction of starch. Out of total arrivals to the mandis nearly 75% of the produce is bought by the poultry feed manufacturers and 20% is purchased by the starch extractors. If we examine the production over the years, maize production in India is remained almost stagnant with constant yield levels despite rise in acreage. Maize, like any other cereal is grown across all the states in India and in many states it is one of the important staple foods. Karnataka and Uttar Pradesh are the leading producers of maize in India while Andhra Pradesh, Bihar, Madhya Pradesh, Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Gujarat, Himachal Pradesh, Jammu & Kashmir, Maharashtra, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland, Orissa, Punjab, Sikkim, Tamil Nadu, Tripura, West Bengal and Rajasthan are the other important producers.

India's maize production may go up by 14 per cent in 2010-11 crop year to over 19 million tonnes on prospects of good rains, better usage of seeds and a higher acreage in traditional paddy-growing states. India had produced 16.68 million tonnes of maize in 2009-10, down from 19.73 million tonnes in 2008-09. The dip in production last year was mainly because of poor monsoon. Greater availability of hybrid seeds would also help boost maize production. In the last few years, the trend has moved towards hybrid seeds. Maize cultivation is gradually picking up in the traditional paddy-growing states like West Bengal, Tamil Nadu and Maharashtra as well, raising prospect of an increased acreage. The maize acreage is around 8.17 million hectares.

India is the fifth largest producer of maize in the world contributing 3% of the global production. In India, maize is grown in all the seasons i.e., kharif, rabi and summer. Of these three seasons, nearly 90% of the production is from kharif season, 7-8% during rabi season and remaining 1-2% during summer season. Since the maize is rain dependent, it is mainly grown during kharif season. Maize is produced in the States:
Karnataka Andhra Pradesh Bihar Punjab Uttar Pradesh Madhya Pradesh Rajasthan Himachal Pradesh

Karnataka: Karnataka is the leading producer of maize in India as it falls under the corn belt of India and produces around 8% of Indias total produce. Karnataka has 3.44 lakh hectare of area under maize. The production is 2,869kg./hectare. The main maize producing districts are:Tumkar, Dakshina, Kannada, Shimoga, Mandya, Uttar Kannada, Mysore, Raichur, and Kodagu.

Andhra Pradesh: Andhra Pradesh has emerged as an important producer of maize. Andhra Pradesh has 3.21 lakh hectare of area under maize. Andhra Pradesh produces around 17% of Indias total produce. The production is 2,678kg./hectare. The main maize producing districts are:-West Godavari, East Godavari, Krishna, Guntur, Nalgonda, Srikakulam, Karimnagar, Nazimabad, Nallore, Prakasam, Medak, Anantapur, Mahbubnagar, Warangal, and Chittoor.

Bihar: Bihar has 8.89lakh hectare of area under maize. Bihar produces around 10% of Indias total produce. The production is 1,645kg./hectare. The main maize producing districts are:Samastipur, Begusarai, Purnea, Purbi, Champaran, Bhagalpur, and Siwam.

Uttar Pradesh: Uttar Pradesh has 10.80lakh hectare of area under maize. Uttar Pradesh produces around 9% of Indias total produce. The production is 1,335kg./hectare. About 25 Districts are producing maize in the state. The main maize producing districts are:Bulandshahr, Jaunpur, Ghaziabad, Bahraich, Farrukhabad, Murur, and Gonda.

Madhya Pradesh: Madhya Pradesh has large percentage of cropped area under maize. Madhya Pradesh has 8.58lakh hectare of area under maize. Madhya Pradesh produces around 12% of Indias total production of maize. The production is 1,335kg./hectare. About 25 Districts are producing maize in the state. The main maize producing districts are:-Mandla, Ujjain, Indore, Ratlam, and Jhabua.

Rajasthan: The arid lands of Rajasthan are very suitable for maize crop. Rajasthan has 9.27lakh hectare of area under maize. Rajasthan produces around 14% of Indias total production of maize. The production is 728kg./hectare. The main maize producing districts are:- Udaipur, Bhilwara, Dungurpur, Chittaurgarh, and Banaswara.

Himachal Pradesh: The climatic conditions of Himachal Pradesh are very suitable for maize crop. The crop is grown on the terraces of the hills. Himachal Pradesh has 3.12lakh hectare of area under maize. Himachal Pradesh produces around 7.17% of Indias total production of maize. The production is 2,039kg./hectare. The main maize producing districts are:- Kangra, Mandi, Sirmour, and Chamba.

Punjab: In Punjab the cultivation and production of maize has fallen drastically. Other kharif crops has taken the place of maize in Punjab. The main maize producing districts are:Jalandhar, Kapurthala, Rupnagar, Ludhiana, Amritsar, Faridkot, and Patiala.

Other states:Among the other maize producing states are: Gujarat:-(6%). Jammu and Kashmir Orissa Maharashtra

Trade:In India, maize is emerging as third most important crop after rice and wheat. Maize has its significance as a source of a large number of industrial products besides its uses as human food and animal feed. Diversified uses of maize for maize corn, starch industry, corn oil production, baby corns, popcorns, etc., and potential for exports has added to the demand of maize all over world. India is emerging as a preferred destination for global maize buyers as the commodity here is cheaper by 25 per cent as compare to other countries. Maize is the most important grain after wheat & rice. India consumes almost all the maize that it produces. Maize provides nutrition to both humans (33.3%) and animals(66.6%). Maize is raw material for production of starch, protein & alcoholic beverages, food sweeteners. India's maize production is between 10-14 million tons with 80 90% of production in kharif.

India produces around 10 million ton of maize. As per latest data release by Ministry of Agriculture , the sowing acreage of maize was at 9.17 lakh hectares as on 24th December 2010 , down 4% from the last year. Higher acreage under the crop raised the hopes of higher production . About 50% of the total Indian produce is consumed as poultry feed and about 8% is consumed by the starch industry. Indian maize exports fluctuates around 5 lakh tons annually. Mostly the southwestern countries import maize from India. In another words, India can be considered as maize importing country. Government fixes the quantity of maize to be imported each year and the imports are to be done on 15%.