Flour crisis looming in Faisalabad

The wheat quota allocated by the Food Department to flour mills across the Faisalabad district has been suspended, raising fears of a flour crisis.

As a result, the flour mill owners went on a rampage and staged a protest at District Council Chowk. The district administration and Food Department officials had already been failing to control the rising flour and wheat prices due to which the price of a 20kg bag of flour in the open market had reached Rs 1,400. With the closure of wheat quota, a flour crisis is likely in Faisalabad. According to the wheat policy 2021, issued by the Punjab Food Department, five bags (100 kg) of wheat quota was allotted on a daily basis for all flour mills.

The mill owners were entitled to get wheat according to their quota by depositing money in the bank, but the Food Department has closed the wheat quota for all 125 flour mills in the city’s limits, prompting protests. All the flour mill owners took part in the protest and blamed the district food controller and additional deputy commissioner, Headquarters, for the closure of the wheat quota.

The owners said that as per the notification of the Punjab chief minister, five sacks of wheat were being provided to the flour chakkis every day and the chakki owners were selling flour for Rs 62 per kg. They claimed that as a result of the suspension of the quota, they have become unemployed while the supply of flour in the open market has stopped, which could lead to a flour crisis.

According to sources, a letter has been issued by the director food of Punjab to the deputy commissioners of all the districts, including Faisalabad, to conduct a survey on the functionality of flour mills for the issuance of the allotted five bags of wheat.

The letter further said that only wheat mills that were fully operational should be issued wheat.