Big news (Cambodian Daily, Apr. 8):
'Cambodia’s year-on-year rice exports for the first three months of 2015 increased by 77 percent, according to figures released Tuesday by the Cambodia Rice Federation (CRF)'.Reasons 1-10 for this increase: China.
Oryza.com (Mar. 27) highlight the anxiety of Italian rice farmer who feel threatened by lower tariff for some rice producing nations. On Cambodia:
'However, Italy's Ente Nazionale Risi, the National Agency for rice noted that the figures provided by Cambodia on 2015 rice exports are wrong as the EU data shows that the decline during the stated period has been only 10%. They noted that despite a decline in imports from Cambodia, Italy is not able to recapture its lost share in the local market'.Maybe Italian farmers are doing something wrong ....
Earlier the Phnom Penh Post (Mar. 20) noted the Cambodian side to the argument:
'Sok Puthyvuth, president of the Cambodia Rice Federation, said yesterday that the purpose of the meeting was for the delegation to have a greater understanding of Cambodia’s rice industry, to better inform their discussions with Italian producers.Cambodia is making progress with it's moves for Geographical Indication for a number of agricultural products, so notes the Phnom Penh Pot (Mar. 13):
“We clarified that Cambodian rice exports to Europe are largely only fragrant rice, so it does not affect the [Italian] farmers,” he said, Puthyvuth said that Italian rice farmers produce largely a white rice variety that did not compete with Cambodia’s fragrant rice'.
'Feasibility studies on achieving Geographical Indication status for Thma Koul rice, Kampot durian and Cambodian golden silk have been completed, officials said yesterday....Song Saran, CEO and president of AMRU rice and CRF board member, said achieving GI status for Cambodia’s Thma Koul rice would open up new markets for Cambodian rice.“It will help boost Cambodian rice exports and the higher value will increase margins for farmers and exporters. With GI status, it will take exporters less effort to promote rice to buyers,” he said'.
'Futures traded on the Chicago Board of Trade have slumped 31% in the past year to $10.70 per 100 pounds'.
'A 46-year-old rice farmer in Phichit's Muang district committed suicide by hanging himself yesterday morning allegedly due to overwhelming debts.A police investigation found that Chid Chusri left home on Wednesday night to "check on water pumps" and didn't return. His relatives went looking for him and found his body hanging from a tree in his rice field at 8.30am yesterday.His older brother, Siplapachai Chusri, told police that Chid had been under a lot of stress because he had debts amounting to Bt700,000 - more than Bt400,000 of which was owed to a local branch of Bank for Agriculture and Agricultural Cooperatives (BACC). He said Chid had recently borrowed Bt7,000 from a relative to pay the bank's debt interest'.
'The Vietnam Food Association said that Chinese businesses top the list of trade partners who try to lower prices by “tricks” and cancel contracts.In 2013 alone, 64 percent of rice export contracts were canceled by Chinese traders. They delayed the delivery schedules for other contracts and lowered prices'.
Branding is hot in Cambodia, now the Vietnamese want the same, so reports Oryza.com (Mar. 24).
On topic, a very recent report (Apr. 11) in India's Economic Times tells how some farmers are upset with hybrid rice:
'"Liangyou 0293", a hybrid rice variety developed by Yuan Longping High-Tech Agriculture Co Ltd (Longping High-Tech) and grown around six cities of east China's Anhui Province has been reported to suffer massive crop failure after being infected with rice blast, a serious disease caused by the imperfect fungus'.
Damage control as reported by CRI (Apr. 11):
'China's agricultural authority says the massive crop failure in Anhui province does not involve a super-hybrid strain of rice.
Super hybrid rice now accounts for around 30% of the country's overall rice cultivation'.