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India's 2019 soybean output could drop 18% on excessive rain: trade body

MUMBAI (Reuters) - India’s soybean output in 2019 is likely to fall nearly 18% from a year ago to 9 million tonnes as excessive rainfall hit the oilseed crop in the top three-producing states, a leading industry group said on Friday.

Lower production could force the world’s biggest edible oil importer to raise overseas buying of palm oil, sunflower oil and soy oil in the 2019/20 marketing year starting from Nov. 1.

The crop was badly affected in low-lying areas of Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra and Rajasthan due to water-logging, the Soybean Processors Association of India said in a statement.

The central state of Madhya Pradesh, the biggest producer of soybeans in the country, received 44% above-average rainfall in 2019. The western states of Maharashtra and Rajasthan are India’s second- and third-biggest producers.

Reporting by Rajendra Jadhav; Editing by Karishma Singh