Wednesday, April 29, 2015

29th April (Wednesday) , 2015 Daily Exclusive ORYZA Rice E_Newsletter by RiceplusMagazine

Global Rice Quotes
April 28th, 2015
Long grain white rice - high quality
Thailand 100% B grade           395-405           ↔
Vietnam 5% broken     355-365           ↔
India 5% broken          365-375           ↓
Pakistan 5% broken     375-385           ↔
Myanmar 5% broken   410-420           ↔
Cambodia 5% broken 430-440           ↔
U.S. 4% broken           480-490           ↔
Uruguay 5% broken    565-575           ↔
Argentina 5% broken   555-565           ↔
Long grain white rice - low quality
Thailand 25% broken 355-365           ↔
Vietnam 25% broken   330-340           ↔
Pakistan 25% broken   330-340           ↔
Cambodia 25% broken            410-420           ↔
India 25% broken        335-345           ↓
U.S. 15% broken         470-480           ↔
Long grain parboiled rice
Thailand parboiled 100% stxd             380-390           ↔
Pakistan parboiled 5% broken stxd      385-395           ↔
India parboiled 5% broken stxd           360-370           ↓
U.S. parboiled 4% broken       555-565           ↔
Brazil parboiled 5% broken     570-580           ↔
Uruguay parboiled 5% broken             NQ       ↔
Long grain fragrant rice
Thailand Hommali 92%           895-905           ↔
Vietnam Jasmine         485-495           ↔
India basmati 2% broken         NQ       ↔
Pakistan basmati 2% broken    NQ       ↔
Cambodia Phka Mails 810-820           ↔
Thailand A1 Super       320-330           ↔
Vietnam 100% broken             310-320           ↔
Pakistan 100% broken stxd     285-295           ↔
Cambodia A1 Super    345-355           ↔
India 100% broken stxd          270-280           ↓
Egypt medium grain brokens   NQ       ↔
U.S. pet food     370-380         ↔
Brazil half grain           NQ       ↔
All prices US D per ton, FOB vessel,

India Rice Sellers Lower Some of Their Quotes Today; Other Asian Rice Quotes Unchanged

Apr 28, 2015

India rice sellers lowered their quotes for 5% broken rice, 100% broken rice and parboiled rice by about $5 per ton each to around $365 - $375 per ton, around $335 - $345 per ton, and around $360 - $370 per ton respectively today; and 25% broken rice by about $10 per ton to around $270 - $280 per ton.  Vietnam rice sellers are out today on account of a public holiday. Other Asian rice sellers kept their quotes unchanged from yesterday.
5% Broken Rice
Thailand 5% rice is indicated at around $380 - $390 per ton. India 5% rice is indicated at around $365 - $375 per ton, a $10 per ton discount to Pakistan 5% rice shown at around $375 - $385 per ton.
25% Broken Rice
Thailand 25% rice is shown at around $355 - $365 per ton. India 25% rice is indicated at around $335 - $345, about a $5 per ton premium on Pakistan 25% rice shown at around $330 - $340 per ton.
Parboiled Rice
Thailand parboiled rice is indicated at around $380 - $390 per ton. India parboiled rice is indicated at around $360 - $370 per ton, about a $25 per ton discount to Pakistan parboiled rice shown at around $385 - $395 per ton.
100% Broken Rice
Thailand broken rice, A1 Super, is indicated at around $320 - $330 per ton. India's 100% broken rice is shown at around $270 - $280 per ton,  about a $15 per ton discount to Pakistan broken sortexed rice shown at around $285 - $295 per ton.
Oryza Overnight Recap – Chicago Rough Rice Futures Show Early Strength as Market Tries to Build Near-Term Bottom
Apr 28, 2015

Chicago rough rice futures for Jul delivery are currently seen 14.5 cent per cwt (about $3 per ton) higher at $10.270 per cwt (about $226 per ton) during early floor trading in Chicago. The other grains are seen trading with mixed results: soybeans are currently seen about 0.7% higher, wheat is listed about 0.4% lower and corn is currently noted 0.1% lower.
U.S. stocks traded mostly higher on Tuesday, as investors eyed strong Apple earnings and the beginning of the Federal Reserve's two-day meeting. The Dow Jones industrial average held gains while the S&P 500 and Nasdaq fluctuated around the flatline. The Fed meeting gets underway Tuesday, with the conclusion and post-meeting statement due Wednesday. A wave of disappointing domestic data since the previous FOMC meeting has spurred economists to downgrade their outlooks for the U.S. economy in 2015.
Investors will be eyeing any comments from the Fed for hints as to when it might hike interest rates. To be sure, with no press conference on Wednesday, analysts do not expect major news out of the U.S. central bank this week. The euro strengthened to above $1.09, with hopes of progress on the Greece debt talks, Boockvar said. However, the stronger currency put pressure on European stocks. The Dow Jones Industrial Average opened up 32 points, or 0.18%, at 18,072.87. The S&P 500 opened up 2.9 points, or 0.05%, at 5,062. The Nasdaq opened up 3 points, or 0.06%. Gold is currently trading about 0.1% lower, crude oil is seen trading about 0.2% higher,  and the U.S. dollar is currently trading about 0.3% lower at 9:30am Chicago time.

Bhutan Plans to Adopt High Yielding, Short Duration Rice Varieties to Boost Production

Apr 28, 2015

Bhutan Agriculture Ministry is planning to provide farmers with newer varieties of rice in order to boost rice production in the country, according to local sources.The Research Development Center (RDC) Bajo has found that two crops can be grown in the rice producing regions of the south and mid-altitude regions. Therefore short-duration rice varieties are understood to be more useful for rice grower in these regions. The RDC Bhur has tested 12 varieties of rice last year for their adaptability, maturity, yield potential and resistance to pests and diseases. However it found only one variety that has a short maturity period and two other varieties which have a potential to be harvested in a short period.
The Ministry of Agriculture is planning to test some more varieties and is keen on releasing at least three to four varieties of high-yielding and short-duration rice within the next few years.
Bhutan's rice sector has been facing several challenges such as lack of irrigation facilities and potential wet land to carry out developmental activities and consequently cannot produce adequate quantity of rice needed to meet the consumption demand. According to study carried out by the RDC Bajo, Bhutan currently produces about 78,000 tons of rice but needs to import about 21,000 tons annually.
The Department of Agriculture (DoA) under the Ministry of Agriculture and Forests (MoAF) targets to produce about 90,000 tons of rice by the end of eleventh five year plan (2013 - 2017). It is encouraging farmers to adopt Kambja, an upland rice cultivation system, as a means to increase production. The Ministry is also planning to bring more wetland under rice cultivation by improving irrigation facilities.

Government of India Promotes Climate Smart Rice Varieties to Boost Production and Farmers Income

Apr 28, 2015
The government of India is encouraging farmers to adopt climate-smart rice varieties to boost production in drought and flood prone states, according to local sources.The Agriculture Minister has urged the farmers in fifteen states to grow flood-tolerant rice varieties and drought-tolerant rice varieties such as Swarna-Sub1. Speaking at an event last week, the Minister noted that these varieties could bring a second green revolution in Eastern India, which are more prone to climate vagaries. He added that the government is keen on changing the face of farm sector in India and improve lives of farmers.
The government has introduced projects such as the National Food Security Mission (NFSM) and Bringing the Green Revolution in Eastern India (BGREI) to boost rice production in India.The government of the Eastern state Bihar has planted climate-smart rice varieties in around 4,500 hectares of land over the last three years under the NFSM project. It has also invested in large-scale seed production of flood-and drought-resistant rice varieties and had distributed a large quantity of Swarna-Sub1 and Sahbhagi dhan seeds last year. It is expecting the seeds to produce more than 3,000 tons of climate-smart rice seeds this year.An agronomist at the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI) added that these climate -smart varieties will also help increase farmers' incomes also as they can grow rice in previously unproductive areas.
The government of India, in its second advance estimates for major crops, has estimated India's rice production for 2014-15 marketing year (October 2014 - September 2015) at around 103.04 million tons, down about 3% from an estimated 106.65 million tons in 2013-14, according to a statement from the Agriculture Ministry. It estimates around 88.02 million tons from kharif rice crop and around 15.02 million tons from rabi rice crop.

Oryza U.S. Rough Rice Recap – Prices Hold Steady Ahead of IGB Tender Results

Apr 28, 2015
The U.S. cash market was seen mostly steady today with little trading ahead of the results of the latest Iraqi Grain Board (IGB) tender.The IGB received offers of on April 26th totaling 625,000 MT of white rice from seven different origins.Analysts note that South American prices were higher than the offers from the U.S. however Asian prices were considerably cheaper relative to the U.S.

Chinese Agricultural Firm to Provide Support to the Gambia Rice Sector

Apr 28, 2015
A private Chinese agricultural investment company has shown interest to invest in The Gambia's agriculture sector, according to local sources.
To start with, the company will develop 1,000 hectares of rice land and will sign a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the government of The Gambia to that extent. It is keen on starting the development activity by May this year.The firm will provide technological support to enhance yields and post-harvesting methods as well as develop value chain for rice and other value-added crops such as maize, fox tail millet and vegetables.
The Chinese firm's involvement in the country's rice sector is understood to support the President's Vision 2016 initiative. The Gambia, which currently imports over 70% of its annual rice consumption needs, is striving to achieve self-sufficiency in rice production in the next few years and cut down imports.USDA estimates The Gambia to produce around 10,000 tons of rice, basis milled, and import around 140,000 tons in MY 2014-15 (October - September) to meet consumption needs of around 170,000 tons.

India Exports Increase 8% y/y to 11.65 Million Tons in FY 2014-15, Says AIREA

Apr 28, 2015
Description: exported around 11.65 million tons of rice (including basmati and non-basmati) in the FY 2014-15 (April - March), up about 8% from around 10.78 million tons exported during the same period in FY 2013-14, Bloomberg quoted All India Rice Exporters Association (AIREA).India's basmati rice exports have increased slightly to around 3.78 million tons in FY 2014-15 from around 3.76 million tons exported during the same period in FY 2013-14. India's basmati rice exports were primarily impacted due to Iran's ban on rice imports since November 2014. India exported around 900,000 tons of rice to Iran in FY 2014-15, down about 36% from around 1.4 million tons exported last year, according to the AIREA. Saudi Arabia, UAE, Iraq, Kuwait remained the other top importers of Indian basmati rice.India’s non-basmati rice exports increased to around 7.87 million tons, up about 12% from around 7 million tons recorded in the same period in FY 2013-14. African countries were the top importers of India's non-basmati rice.

Oryza Afternoon Recap – Chicago Rough Rice Futures Rebound as Firmer Grains add Support to Oversold Market

Apr 28, 2015
Chicago rough rice futures for Jul delivery settled 11 cents per cwt (about $2 per ton) higher at $10.235 per cwt (about $226 per ton). The other grains finished the day with gains; Soybeans closed about 0.4% higher at $9.7725 per bushel; wheat finished about 0.6% higher at $4.7625 per bushel, and corn finished the day about 0.1% higher at $3.6100 per bushel.U.S. stocks traded higher on Tuesday, recovering morning losses amid international news as investors eyed Apple earnings and the beginning of the Federal Reserve's two-day meeting. The Federal Market Open Committee began on Tuesday and will conclude with the release of a post-meeting statement expected at 2 p.m. on Wednesday.
A wave of mostly disappointing domestic data since the previous FOMC meeting has spurred economists to downgrade their outlooks for the U.S. economy in 2015, particularly for the first quarter. Signs of economic improvement in the subsequent quarters could still support a rate hike this year. Tuesday's afternoon gains were muted as investors remained on edge ahead of Wednesday's expected statement. The Dow Jones industrial average held about 60 points higher after briefly falling more than 100 points as the Iran headlines came out. The other major indices traded mildly higher. The euro strengthened to above $1.09, with hopes of progress on the Greece debt talks, Boockvar said.

However, the stronger currency put pressure on European stocks, which closed lower. Greek Prime Minister, Alexis Tsipras, said on Monday that he may resort to a referendum if lenders insist on demands that the government deems unacceptable, Reuters reported. But he added that he was confident of striking a deal to avoid such a scenario. The Dow Jones Industrial Average traded up 62 points, or 0.34%, to 18,100. The S&P 500 traded up 5 points, or 0.24%, at 2,114, with telecommunications leading nine sectors higher and consumer discretionary the only laggard. The Nasdaq traded up 5 points, or 0.10%, at 5,065. Gold is trading about 0.9% higher, crude oil is seen trading about 0.4% lower, and the U.S. dollar is seen trading about 0.7% lower at about  1:00pm Chicago time.Monday, there were 2,312 contracts traded, up from 1,615 contracts traded on Friday. Open interest – the number of contracts outstanding – on Monday increased by 252 contracts to 11,529.

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28th April (Tuesday) ,2015 Daily Global Rice E-Newsletter

Massive trade deal could come down to two things: Rice and cars
Officials are working feverishly to unsnag a deal with Japan and 10 other Asia-Pacific countries.
 4/27/15 6:56 PM EDT
Updated 4/28/15 10:42 AM EDT
 Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe will get the royal treatment this week during his U.S. visit: an arrival ceremony on the South Lawn; an Oval Office meeting and press conference with President Barack Obama; a State Department lunch with Vice President Joe Biden; and Secretary of State John Kerry and, last but not least, a state dinner with nearly 300 guests.But behind the scenes, White House officials are working feverishly to unsnag a trade deal with Japan and 10 other Asia-Pacific countries that would be the largest such agreement in history. The two major hold-ups: rice and cars.
Washington wants Japan to raise the cap on the amount of rice the U.S. can sell to the country without tariffs, which can top 778 percent. Tokyo wants the U.S., long protective of its auto industry, to drop tariffs on cars, trucks and auto parts.
While Obama and Abe will discuss the agreement, they are not expected to reach a breakthrough on the outstanding issues; that’s the job of Obama’s top trade official, Michael Froman, and his Japanese counterpart, Akira Amari. But a Japanese official close to the negotiations told POLITICO the talks have progressed far enough that the two countries are likely to clinch a deal in the next few weeks, removing the biggest hurdle to inking the broader pact, which, in turn, could happen by late May.
The latest that both sides will try to conclude their talks is by the next Trans-Pacific Partnership ministers meeting, the Japanese embassy source said. Top trade officials could wrap up work on the massive Asia-Pacific trade agreement, which would cover an estimated 40 percent of global gross domestic product, at the end of next month in Singapore.
But the pact is riding largely on whether the U.S. and Japan can resolve their differences over agricultural and automobile import tariffs, which the two nations had hoped in recent months would be accomplished by the time Abe came to Washington. While the two leaders talk, U.S. and Japanese trade officials will also be meeting this week in the nation’s capital to try to hammer out details like how much U.S. rice Japan is willing to accept and a mechanism that would prevent a surge of Japanese autos into the U.S.
Rice and cars have always been a sticking point in U.S-Japanese trade relations: Japan is very protective of its home-grown rice industry, which is ingrained in the country’s culture, while the U.S. doesn’t want Toyota and Honda to undercut the iconic Ford and Chevy pickup truck industry.
Obama said Monday that both sides were getting closer to a deal, but he did not expect one to be announced while Abe is in town.
“Negotiations are tough on both sides because he’s got his own politics and interests,” Obama said in an interview with The Wall Street Journal. “I don’t expect that we will complete all negotiations,” but “I will say that the engagement has brought the parties much closer together.”
Obama again pressed the case for his trade agenda in the face of stiff opposition from fellow Democrats in Congress, warning that China will write the rules of trade in the region if the TPP talks fail.
White House state dinner honors Japan — and china
“We will be shut out — American businesses and American agriculture. That will mean a loss of new jobs,” he told the newspaper.
A deal between the two countries could be hastened by the House and Senate markups last week of so-called fast-track trade legislation that would expedite Congress’ approval of the TPP and another huge pact Washington is negotiating with the European Union. The trade promotion authority bill would allow unamendable deals to be sent to lawmakers for an up-or-down vote, giving negotiating partners like Japan assurances that they can put their best offers on the table. Over the past several weeks, Abe’s visit was seen as a potential handshake moment in the trade talks.
“The fact that they couldn’t bring this together for the prime minister’s visit, I think it’s a missed opportunity,” Mireya Solis, senior fellow and Japan expert at the Brookings Institution, said, noting that the last time a Japanese leader visited Washington was nine years ago. “I was actually hoping they could at least announce they are very close to reaching a deal,” she added.
Whatever progress is made on trade this week, it may be overshadowed by security developments. Japan unveiled new defense cooperation guidelines this week that would give Tokyo a stronger hand over regional military affairs and deepen its strategic ties with the U.S.
 GOP confident on fast-track votes
Both issues could come up when Abe addresses a joint session of Congress and talks to business CEOs at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce on Wednesday.
“I think the expectation on our part is for the prime minister to really make the case why our relationship is so important in the Asia-Pacific region,” said Rep. Charles Boustany, a co-chair of the Japan Caucus and an outspoken supporter of the Asia-Pacific trade deal.
The House Ways and Means and Senate Finance Committees’ approval of fast-track legislation last week was important to showing other nations the U.S. is putting its full weight behind moving the trade agenda forward, the Louisiana Republican said.
Boustany said he hoped the visit would give Abe the opportunity to elevate the TPP to “a place that hopefully gives him the space to make the kind of decisions he needs to make.”
Abe’s ruling Liberal Democratic Party faces fierce pressure from the country’s powerful agriculture lobby to prevent a surge in foreign commodities from destroying the livelihood of smaller-scale Japanese farmers, especially those that raise sensitive products, including rice, dairy, beef, pork and wheat.
Right now, the agricultural talks are focused mainly on Japan’s rice market, which the White House is working to pry open by lowering import tariffs. Japanese officials are considering offering the U.S. more access through a quota that wouldn’t be subject to duties.
The U.S. dairy industry is also pushing for more access than Tokyo has been willing to provide.
“The Administration has made significant progress in dairy, but what Japan has done so far is not enough,” said Jaime Castaneda, senior vice president for strategic initiatives and trade policy at the National Milk Producers Federation.
Full coverage of trade policy
“Our industry will be keeping a close watch on any growth limitation on any dairy product.”
The U.S. is also pushing Tokyo to address policies and regulations that U.S. automakers say keep them from selling cars in Japan.Meanwhile, Japan has been pushing for the immediate elimination of a 2.5 percent tariff on auto parts and a reasonable phase-out period for duties on car and light truck imports.
Read more:

United States rice back on retail shelves in UK

·         The reappearance of U.S. rice in U.K. retail stores comes after years of campaigning and promotional efforts by USA Rice to assure suppliers that U.S.-grown rice is a high quality, competitive crop free of GMO traits.
·         By USA Rice Federation

Posted Apr. 27, 2015 at 3:06 PM 
In a major victory for the rice industry, U.S. rice has reemerged on mainstream UK retail shelves for the first time since 2006.The reappearance of U.S. rice in U.K. retail stores comes after years of campaigning and promotional efforts by USA Rice to assure suppliers that U.S.-grown rice is a high quality, competitive crop free of GMO traits. Last October, a USA Rice trade delegation traveled to the UK to meet with major retailers, UK rice importers, millers, and selected wholesalers.During that successful trip, the team met with USDA Foreign Agricultural Service representatives from London, and Jim Higgiston, the Agricultural Minister Counselor at the United States Mission to the EU."We had an excellent and worthwhile dialogue with U.K. importers that has apparently paid off," said Bastiaan de Zeeuw, president and CEO of Riviana Foods.
For the past several years, U.S. long grain rice in the UK had only been present in the ethnic segment of the market, targeting mainly Chinese, as well as the Afro-Caribbean and Bangladeshi populations, a loyal consumer base who appreciate U.S. long grain's high quality characteristics.However, thanks to the continuous joint effort by USA Rice and U.K. importers, U.S. rice can now be enjoyed by a much wider audience.
The umbrella brand carrying U.S. rice, Tolly Boy, is a well-known and trusted brand in the UK market, carrying different high quality rice varieties. The identified U.S. rice brand is available in select Asda stores in 5 kg and 10 kg packaging and its presence in mainstream retail stores has the potential to expand the consumer base substantially, offering higher sales volumes for U.S. long grain rice."This is an exciting development for the U.S. rice industry. The U.K. has the potential to grow into a significant market again and perhaps signal our imminent return to the continent as well," said de Zeeuw.
Savanna Agric Institute to enhance rice production
The Savanna Agricultural Research Institute (SARI) has secured a $1 million World Bank grant to enhance local rice cultivation in the northern ecological zones of the country.Dubbed the “System of Rice Intensification (SRI),” the three-year project seeks to train rice farmers on the correct rice farming practices to ensure higher yields.It is being implemented by SARI in collaboration with the West African Agricultural Productivity Programme (WAPP).It will be implemented in six regions, namely the Northern, Upper East, Volta, Ashanti, Brong Ahafo, and Kpong and Dahwenya in the Greater Accra Region.The initiative was first developed in Madagascar to train rice farmers in good farming practices and resources to ensure higher yields in rice production.
Speaking at the launch, the Monitoring and Evaluation officer at WAPP, Mr Augustine Oppong Dankwa, said the project was going to train the farmers in the best rice farming techniques including seed treatment, soil preparation and the right quantities of manure and water to use during cultivation.He said also that the application of too much water and seed by some rice farmers was not good for most of the rice farms.He explained that the farmers would be taken through field demonstrations on how to manage the amount of water and seeds during cultivation.
Dr Dankwa urged the rice farmers to adopt the SRI initiative, since it as was effective, less tiresome and also helped the farmers to cultivate more rice from just little seeds.The Research Co-ordinator at SARI, Dr Wilson Dogbe, for his part, said most of the problems the rice sector faced were due to the challenges of climate change in the country.He said although the rice sector had developed in the last 10 years, the country still produced only 30 per cent of rice, which he said was a very worrying state worrisome.
Dr Dogbe added that the institution was going to develop new technologies and approaches to enable farmers grow rice in healthy and drought-free environments to promote the sector.Mr Amoah Duncan Raymond, a rice farmer in the Volta Region, in an interview, said the zone alone contributed 45 per cent of the rice produced in the region.He said some of the land in the zone were not suitable for the production of rice, since they were very rocky and hilly.

Silicon: An important element in rice production

Silicon (Si) is the second most abundant element of the earth`s crust after oxygen. It has long been neglected by ecologists, as it is not considered an essential nutrient for plants. However, research of recent years showed that it is beneficial for the growth of many plants, including important crops such as rice, wheat and barley.For instance, Si enhanced the resistance against pests, pathogens and abiotic stresses such as salts, drought and storms. Silicon might, thus, play a crucial role in the development of `sustainable` rice production systems with lower or zero input of harmful pesticides.
Researchers from the interdisciplinary LEGATO project on sustainable rice production look in more detail at the cycle of plant-available Si in contrasting regions of Vietnam and the Philippines to provide insights on the importance of this element on rice production.A recent article published in the journal Plant and Soil reports on Si cycling and budgets on the farm level in the Laguna province of the Philippines. The data show that the irrigation water can provide a considerable amount of the Si that is taken up by plants. In rain water, the concentrations of Si were below the detection limit of the analytical method; the researchers, thus, assume that rain is no important Si source for plants. Another major source of plant-available Si is the dissolution of solid soil particles.
In a subsequent study, the LEGATO researchers currently focus on the soil processes that determine the pool of plant-available Si during the growing period. Recent literature suggests that the recycling and decomposition of rice straw plays a crucial role for Si availability. The farmers should therefore recycle the straw completely.This is not done by all of the farmers that were interviewed within the LEGATO project, i.e., some of them remove part of the straw and use it e.g., as fertilizer on vegetable fields. Over the long-term, this could have negative effects on the Si supply to rice plants. Particularly in regions, where soils are strongly weathered, and the Si availability is therefore very low (e.g., the LEGATO study sites in Vietnam), farmers should consider Si availability as a factor in the management of the rice field.
Klotzbücher, T., Leuther, F., Marxen, A., Vetterlein, D., Horgan, F., Jahn, R. 2015. Forms and fluxes of potential plant-available silicon in irrigated lowland rice production (Laguna, the Philippines). Plant and Soil, doi:10.1007/s11104-015-2480-y
Klotzbücher, T., Marxen, A., Vetterlein, D., Schneiker, J., Türke, M., Van Sinh, N., Manh, N.H., Van Chien, H., Marquez, L., Villareal, S., Bustamante, J.V., Jahn, R. 2015. Plant-available silicon in Southeast Asian paddy soils - baseline data for the LEGATO project. Basic and Applied Ecology. doi:10.1016/j.baae.2014.08.002

Rice exports grow

Rice exports are set to leap by more than 10 percent this year, setting a new record, industry experts said yesterday. U Soe Tun, associate secretary of the Myanmar Rice Federation (MRF), said total exports would reach 2 million metric tonnes in 2015-2016.
The surge is due to a deal regularising exports to China, as well as the emergence of the United States as a buyer of Myanmar rice, he said.“Being able to export rice to the USA is a significant improvement, even though the amount is small. We expect the volume to rise so long as we can maintain the quality,” he said.Last year, 1.39 million metric tonnes of rice was exported, plus more than 400,000 tonnes of broken rice, earning US$644 million – a 40-year record, overtaking the 1.46 million tonnes sold in 2012-13 fiscal year.Myanmar now serves 64 international rice buyers, including the United States, which last year bought 17 tonnes of high-quality pawsan, export figures stated.
The agreement with China to export 100,000 tonnes is planned to start with a 3000-tonne consignment in May.However, U Ye Min Aung, general secretary of the MRF, says much still has to be done to improve export quality and price control. “The government has to cut logistics costs in order to control the price of exported goods,” he said.
Though its economy depends heavily on rice exports, Myanmar still ranks relatively low among Asia’s rice exporters.

Translation by Zar Zar Soe
Paddy Marketing Board to sell part of stocks purchased
 Apr 28, 2015  Ariram Panchalingam  

The Paddy Marketing Board says that the paddy purchased during the Maha Season will be sold after converting it into rice.Chairman of the board M. B. Dissanayake said that a part of this stock are to be kept as secured stocks.The Chairman elaborating on the issue that that there are requests from some areas  for more paddy to be purchased. He said that the subject minister had forwarded this request to the cabinet for money to be released.
He said:
The money that we requested will be released soon and discussions are underway with the regard to what needs to be done to the purchased paddy.He stated that as a result, the  ministry will be having necessary stocks while selling the rest to the public. He stated that the money earned through this exercise can be used to develop storage facilities.

International Benchmark Price
Price on: 27-04-2015
Benchmark Indicators Name
Chinese first grade granules, CFR NW Europe (USD/t)
Chinese Grade A dehydrated flakes, CFR NW Europe (USD/t)
Chinese powdered, CFR NW Europe (USD/t)
Chinese sliced, CIF NW Europe (USD/t)
Chinese whole, CIF NW Europe (USD/t)
Indian Cochin, CIF NW Europe (USD/t)
Guar Gum Powder
Indian 100 mesh 3500 cps, FOB Kandla (USD/t)
Indian 200 mesh 3500 cps basis, FOB Kandla (USD/t)
Indian 200 mesh 3500 cps technical grade, FOB Kandla (USD/t)
For more info
Market Watch
Commodity-wise, Market-wise Daily Price on 27-04-2015
Domestic Prices
Unit Price : Rs per Qty
Market Center
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Max Price
Jatni (Orissa)
Manjeri (Kerala)
Gajol (West  Bengal)
Amirgadh (Gujarat)
Bonai (Orissa )
Kottakkal (Kerala)
Chala (Kerala)
Bonai (Orissa)
For more info
Rs per 100 No
Price on 27-04-2015
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Unit Price : US$ per package
Price on 27-04-2015
Market Center
Package: flats 1 layer
Package: 50 lb cartons
Round Green Type
Round Green Type
Round Green Type
Package: cartons tray pack
Red Delicious
Red Delicious
Red Delicious

Partnership with Big Y Dietitians Helps Boost Awareness and Sales of U.S. Rice  

USA Rice's Cranberry Pecan 
Rice Pilaf cover shot
makes an impression
ARLINGTON, VA -- Earlier this year, USA Rice participated in the Living Well Eating Smart (LWES) program at Big Y, a supermarket chain of more than 60 stores in Massachusetts and Connecticut. From January through March, shoppers were exposed to the many uses and nutritional benefits of U.S.-grown rice through a print and online newsletter, social media, as well as in-store signage and displays.During the two-month promotion, Big Y's rice category saw a 5.8 percent increase in rice unit sales compared to the same time period last year. "With a growing trend toward sustainable, locally-grown, nutritious foods, a focus on U.S.-grown rice was a perfect fit for our January Winter Warm-Ups theme," said Andrea Luttrell, Big Y Registered Dietitian. "It's important to educate shoppers on the health benefits of the foods they are purchasing. Our shoppers were very receptive to the messages about rice -- after all, it's such an affordable and versatile pantry staple! So reminding them that this delicious food comes with a host of nutritional benefits, and that it's grown in the USA, allows our shoppers to enjoy their eating experience while feeling good about what they are feeding their families."  
Customized partnerships with retail dietitians are a great way to increase visibility of U.S.-grown rice in the supermarket communication channels and drive shopper interest in U.S.-grown rice.

Contact:  Katie Maher (703) 236-1453
CME Group/Closing Rough Rice Futures   
CME Group (Prelim):  Closing Rough Rice Futures for April 28
Net Change

May 2015
+ $0.110
July 2015
+ $0.110
September 2015
+ $0.105
November 2015
+ $0.105
January 2016
+ $0.105
March 2016
+ $0.105
May 2016
+ $0.105

Pakistan offers PTA to Afghanistan, FTA to Iran: Khurram
Monday, 27 April 2015 20:40
Posted by Shoaib-ur-Rehman Siddiqui
ISLAMABAD: Minister for Commerce, Engineer Khurran Dastgir Khan here on Monday said that Pakistan has offered Preferential Trade Agreement (PTA) to Afghanistan and Free Trade Agreement (FTA) to Iran for enhancing trade with both the countries.In a statement, the minister said that after trade agreements with both countries the trade volume of the country would significantly increase which would bring positive impact on national economy.The minister said that under the vision of Prime Minister, Ministry of Commerce was taking every possible step to promote trade relation with these countries.He said that Prime Minister had visited different countries of the region in order to enhance bilateral trade relation and he was intended to establish these relations on long term for mutual benefits.Commerce Minister said that during recent visit to Afghanistan and Iran he had discussed the pending trade issues for their swift settlement and suggested to remove export duty on Pakistani goods for Central Asian States through Afghanistan.He said these steps would facilitate the traders besides enhancing the trade from the country. He further said that during recent visit to Iran he had also discussed duties imposed by Iran on import of wheat, rice and fruits from Pakistan to bring balance and stability in trade.

Government working towards raising productivity of crops: Bosan

April 28, 2015
Federal Minister for National Food Security and Research Sikandar Hayat Khan Bosan has announced that the government is working on every possible option to increase the productivity of different crops. "Relief will be given to farmers in the coming budget while such a policy is being devised to ensure that benefit of subsidy should go to them, rather than middle men. His announcement came in a seminar arranged by a private company to launch Urea-Z, which is a bioactive nutrient fortified fertilised introduced for the first time for the Pakistani farmers. The minister said recent rains had caused damage to Lahore, Gujranwala and the Potohar region and the government had called for a report to analyse the extent of the damage and that after the 18th Amendment most of the decision making rests with provinces and federation had left with few aspects.
But he assured his government's efforts to better this sector. He then appreciated the introduction of bio-fertilisers that would ensure consistent bioavailability of immobile and less mobile nutrients during the crop life such as P, Zn, B and Fe. "The products not only improve plant health and yield but also minimise the financial burden on the farmers. Urea Z and Bio Organo Phosphorus are two of such products, introduced in Pakistan," he added. In his speech, Niha Tech Pvt Ltd Chief Executive Officer Nadeem Tariq said zinc was one of the most critical micronutrients not only for crop production but also for human health. "The primary reason of deficiency in crops is its lower bioavailability from soils to plant. Under the Pakistani soil and environmental conditions, only four to eight percent of the zinc applied in soil is available to plant and the remaining 92 to 96 percent is wasted in soil that is loss of farmers' investment." He went on, "Farmers of rice, maize, sugarcane, potato and other crops generally spend Rs 3,350 per acre on one bag of urea 50 kilograms and 6 kilograms of 33 percent of zinc sulphate.
 Due to 30 to 60 percent N losses from urea and 92 to 96 percent losses of zinc, the farmers do not get economical return of their investment in the form of crop produce quantity and quality. "Lower concentration of zinc in the agricultural produce has started seriously affecting human health in Pakistan. The most efficient and economical channel of providing sufficient zinc to masses human is through the agricultural produce. Therefore, it is critical to increase the availability of zinc in the agricultural produce to avert a negative impact of deficiency in human.
 Urea Z has 42 percent nitrogen and 2 percent bioactive zinc contents and which has been tested in farmer fields of Pakistan at rice, maize, wheat, potato and other crops for the past few years and test marketing started from rice crop 2014. "Urea Z has proved to be revolutionary fertilizer for all corps by ensuring consistent supply of zinc through its patent bioactive zinc component, improving efficiency of nitrogen and other nutrients. In addition, it enhanced root mass by 15 to 20 percent, intensity of leaves' green colour and crop resistance against lodging and ultimately yield by 15 percent. Urea Z also contributed in reducing cost of nitrogen and zinc fertilisers' application. 

Published on Tuesday, 28 April 2015 01:15
IN Kilombero District, hundreds of kilometres from East African Community headquarters in Arusha, smallholder rice farmers are still struggling to sell their rice from 2012/13 season.“Prices are still very low but have slightly appreciated from 600/- to 750/- a kilogramme on average,” said Ms Christina Magwila.The mother of four said prices plummeted by more than 50 per cent last year when Kilombero Plantation Limited, the single largest client of her rice, failed to buy the commodity from over 5,000 smallholder farmers due to saturated local market.“I sold my rice at a loss because I needed school fees for my two secondary school girls and their primary school sibling,” said Ms Magwila who like many other smallholder rice farmers in the country, is struggling to absorb the huge loss caused.
KPL Chief Executive Officer, Mr Carter Coleman said his company posted a whopping 4bn/- loss as a result of the Pakistan rice imports in 2013 and a similar amount due to a 25 per cent price fall caused by a bumper harvest in 2013/14 season.“Some 40,000 tonnes of cheap Pakistani rice that was exempt from the Common External Tariff of the East African Community was imported, dropping the wholesale price by 54 per cent and impoverishing hundreds of thousands of rice smallholders,” Mr Coleman said while responding in an interview.The government had initially issued permits for the importation of 120,000 tonnes of rice to offset an alleged shortage in the local market but suspended the imports in March last year after an outcry by commercial and smallholder rice farmers.
KPL still had 1,000 tonnes of rice from the 2012 season and another 5,000 tonnes from 2013 season which could not be sold at a profitable price due to the cheap imports by mid last year.Local rice producers further faced problems to export the grain to Rwanda and Uganda because crooked traders blended local rice with Pakistan imports forcing governments of the two countries to slap a 75 per cent import duty. Coleman is angry with Ugandan authorities for continuing to impose the 75 per cent duty on Tanzanian rice exports contrary to EAC’s Customs Union Protocol.“There is no substantial Pakistani rice in Tanzania, please get your government to lift the tariff on our rice as you are bankrupting Tanzanian farmers,” said Coleman in an emotional message directed at former Ugandan Ambassador to China, Philip Idro.In his response, Ambassador Idro argued that so long as local rice was blended with Pakistan rice, it will continue attracting hiked duty because it violates the rules of origin as per EAC Customs Protocol. “This means that we have to do our part and that is why Uganda is going ahead to hold onto the 75 per cent tax, even if alone,” Ambassador Idro stressed.He warned that local rice producers who create jobs and add value to the economy should regularly update policy makers on the disaster which imported rice is causing on the EAC region’s economies.
But the jinx of Pakistan rice imports does not only seem to haunt local farmers, but also their peers in Kenya where the government has a bilateral agreement with Pakistan to swap tea and rice trading.Last week, a delegation of East African Farmers Federation led by its President Philip Kiriro, visited East Africa Cooperation Minister, Dr Harrison Mwakyembe and raised the issue of Pakistan rice imports frustrating regional trade. EAFF Chief Executive Officer, Stephen Muchiri said Kenyan rice farmers are failing to exploit the EAC Customs Union Protocol because their commodity to Rwanda and Uganda is slapped with a 75 percent duty.“You know Kenya has a trade agreement with Pakistan whereby they buy tea while we import their rice. Unscrupulous businessmen are mixing the Pakistan rice with local rice in Kenya which has attracted a 75 per cent import duty in Uganda and Rwanda,” Mr Muchiri said.
“I understand this problem has also affected rice farmers here, I hope that you as Chairman of the Council of Ministers can help us address this,” he pointed out saying EAFF is working with United States Agency for International Development in assisting farmers acquire skills, identify markets and observe quality and standards.Currently after investing heavily in rice production, local farmers produce over 1.2 million metric tons of the commodity against annual demand of less than one million tonnes.Responding to the EAFF delegation’s request, Dr Mwakyembe said he will raise the matter with his peers during the next Council of Ministers meeting scheduled for Thursday, April 3. “Much of this rice is smuggled into our region, we should find a solution against this,” said Dr Mwakyembe.He pointed out that EAC’s biggest trading prowess lies in agriculture produce which involves the majority of people in the region hence the need to protect the market for such commodities.
Dr Mwakyembe invited EAFF officials to make their presentation before an EAC Council of Ministers which will thereafter deliberate on the matter.Earlier this year, EAC Finance Ministers agreed a 35 per cent Common External Tariff (CET) on imported rice for the region, a move which has strongly been opposed by rice farmers and former Minister for Agriculture, Food Security and Cooperatives Minister, Christopher Chiza.“I was not consulted on this issue which is detrimental to our farmers,” Engineer Chiza said promising to strongly oppose the attempt. He said Kenya which includes Pakistan rice on its list of sensitive products, imposes a 35 per cent duty hence wants the whole block to adopt the rate.“My fear is that Kenyan rice imports with a lower rate will continue be smuggled into Tanzania,” Eng Chiza who has since been shifted to Prime Minister’s Office, warned. Finance Minister, Saada Mkuya Salum said the CET is negotiable and can be hiked by individual countries if need arises to curb cheap imports.

Ep 5 Annie and Lloyd: Sea Bream Baked in Parchment with Saffron Rice

Prep: 20 mins                                 
Cook: 25 mins                                 
Serves: 4 

·         4 plate size sea bream (about 300g), scaled, gutted
·         2 large lemons, thinly sliced
·         2 long red chillies, thinly sliced
·         1 cm piece fresh ginger, thinly sliced
·         1 red onion, thinly slice
·         ½ bunch coriander leaves
·         ½ bunch mint leaves

Saffron Rice
·         200g basmati rice, washed
·         5 saffron threads
·         1 cardamom pod, bruised
·         1 star anise
·         1 tsp salt
·         1 kaffir lime leaf, shredded
·         25g butter, chopped
·         Finely grated zest and juice of ½ lemon

·         2 tbs olive oil
·         Juice of 1 lemon
·         4 radishes, thinly sliced
·         2 green spring onions, thinly sliced
·         1 carrot, grated
·         1 baby cos lettuce, shredded
·         1 long red chilli, thinly sliced
·         ½ cup torn mint leaves
·         ½ cup torn coriander leaves

1.      Preheat oven to 200C. Cut out four pieces of baking paper, twice the size of your fish.
2.      Score each fish on both sides at 3cm intervals. Season well all over inside and out.
3.      Fill cavity with half the lemon slices.
4.      Divide half the chillies, ginger, onion, herbs and remaining lemon slices among centre of each piece of paper to form a bed. Season. Place fish on top. Cover with remaining vegetables and herbs. Fold in sides of paper and then fold in ends to form a package.
5.      Bake for about 15 minutes or until almost cooked. Remove from oven and stand 10 minutes.
6.      Meanwhile, place rice in a saucepan and add enough water to come 2.5cm above the rice. Stir in spices and lime leaf. Bring to a boil. Cover with a tight fitting lid and reduce heat to low. Cook for a further 13-15 minutes. Stand covered for 5 minutes.
7.      Remove cardamom pod and star anise. Stir in butter, zest and juice.
8.      To make salad, whisk oil and juice in a large bowl. Season. Add remaining ingredients. Toss to combine.
9.      Serve fish with rice and salad.

·         Exact cooking time of fish will depend on size. Test by inserting a fork into the thickest part of the fish. If the flesh comes away from the bone, it is cooked. Standing the fish in its parcel, allows  residual heat to gently finish cooking the fish after it has been removed from the oven.
·         You could use any type of plate size fish for this recipe.
·         Try serving this dish with a quick raita – mix 250g plain yoghurt with 2 tbs of finely chopped mint. Stir in a pinch of ground cumin and season
Why A Scientist Is Growing Rice On A Marquette University Rooftop
By SUSAN BENCE  APR 24, 2015

Michael Schläppi at his rooftop paddy system before spring planting began. Schläppi studied in his native Switzerland before hopping the Atlantic to do postdoctoral work.

When I first visited, the paddies were still frozen.

Schläppi also grows rice indoors in climate controlled chambers. He applies stress, dramatic temperature shifts, to learn how the plant reacts.
Rice lines Schläppi grew and studied last year.
In April, Schläppi plänted one paddy with seeds....

....another with seeds he germinated inside, to see how their growth and health compare.
Most of the world’s rice production occurs oceans away from the United States. In 2011, molecular biologist Michael Schläppi dove into rice research hoping to grow the grain in Wisconsin.According Schläppi, 80 percent of the rice Americans consume is grown in a handful of states, especially Arkansas and California. “But I think it would be wise to think about, with climate change or the drought in California, maybe they won’t be able to grow rice anymore,” he says.Of course wild rice grows in Wisconsin, but it’s a distant relative. The real thing originated around the Yangtze and Pearl Rivers of China.The Marquette University scientist challenged himself to uncover varieties able to cope with Wisconsin’s climate.
One of Schläppi's climate-controlled chambers.
A long, narrow room at the university serves as Schläppi’s greenhouse. It holds special climate controlled growth chambers and is filled with rice at various stages of development.“The main thing that I’m testing whether they flower here, set seeds and the seeds can be harvested on time before winter, before it gets to cold," he says. "And also, measure what the actual yield is."He has experimented with more than 200 rice varieties, from Australia to Uzbekistan to South America. Each possesses unique colors and characteristics.Schläppi uncovered a Russian line he thought would have the best results in Wisconsin. It’s known as Krasnodarky 3352.
On the roof of the Wehr Life Sciences building on Marquette's campus, Schläppi built a dozen rice paddies. They are raised beds, blanketed with swimming pool liner and filled soil.“Two weeks ago, I started germination inside, which will be put into the paddy today and flooded," he explains.“It’s the third year I've planted this time of year – mid April. The rice doesn’t like it, but it can make it,” Schläppi says. "That’s what I’m testing, I’m stress-testing the lines."
The rice project at Alice's Garden
Last summer, he partnered with Alice's Garden's Fieldhands and Foodways Project.  Schläppi planted rice lines from Africa in two paddy systems.Schläppi is now preparing to plant rice in a field north of Milwaukee. It’s Fondy Farm, a cooperative of small-scale farmers who sell their produce on the city’s North Side. Many of the farmers are Hmong."I’m renting an acre of land there, so my students will help me prepare fields," he says. Schläppi will flood a portion of his parcel to mimic traditional lowland rice farming.

“What we want to test is to take a couple of seeds, put them into the soil. That’s what the Hmong are proposing, because that’s what they did in their traditional way. Just make holes, put the seeds, then you have to irrigate it, you have to weed it, of course, and then see what kind of yield we get,” Schläppi says.Schläppi has more than a scientific interest in developing the perfect rice for Wisconsin's climate; he respects the ancient traditions of growing rice in community.
“To grow rice you really need the community, especially if it is paddy-driven, water resources you have to manage as a village. You help everyone plant, one family one week, the next week another family, you all pitch in. For the harvest the same,” Schläppi says.
Lights, Camera, Action! MyPlate Video Search
Posted by Shelley Maniscalco, Director, Office of Nutrition Marketing and Communication, Center for Nutrition Policy and Promotion, on April 27, 2015 at 1:00 PM
Kids 2-18 years, with the support of a parent or guardian, Check Out MyPlate Video Search now through April 30, 2015.As registered dietitian nutritionists, we love to see MyPlate in action!  MyPlate was created as a familiar mealtime symbol that helps people learn about choosing a variety of healthy foods within all the food groups.  It is a foundation which can be built upon to reach any audience where they are and in ways most impactful for them.  We find it exciting to see how MyPlate comes to life when it’s used in the marketplace and very much appreciate all those who are using MyPlate in innovative ways from in-store promotions and food packaging to MyPlate nutrition education programs, materials, songs, social media campaigns, and the list goes on.
One exciting, recent example is a video contest for kids, entitled Check Out MyPlate. A group of organizations (Gerber, Canned Food Alliance, Fresh Baby, USA Rice Federation, Chop Chop, and School Nutrition Association) developed the video competition to get kids thinking creatively about applying MyPlate to their lives. It’s an activity that engages children and teens ages 2-18, their parents, and teachers to create videos that showcase healthy eating habits through nutritious eating and activity choices. Qualifying videos are 60 seconds or less and include:
•           An image of MyPlate
•           At least one healthy eating tip
•           A favorite physical activity
If you would like to learn more about their competition, visit the Check Out MyPlate website before the contest ends on April 30. We are excited to see the creative ways that kids engage in healthy nutrition and physical activities!

2015 Arkansas Rice Expo Recipe Contest renders rice a blank canvas

Grilled Rice and Black Bean Burritos with Creamy Cilantro Dipping Sauce
Tiffany Aaron's take on black beans and rice was a winner in the 2014 Arkansas Rice Expo Recipe Contest. Her Grilled Rice and Black Bean Burritos with Creamy Cilantro Dipping Sauce makes an easy summer time meal. (U of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture photo by Mary Hightower.)

Weed scientists offer new definition for “Superweed”

By The Weed Science Society of America April 28, 2015 | 5:00 pm EDT
The Weed Science Society of America (WSSA) joined with six sister organizations to recommend a new definition for superweed – a catchall term used by many to describe weeds that are perceived to be more invasive and to grow more aggressively after developing resistance to herbicides.Use of superweed has snowballed in recent years, along with considerable misinformation that isn’t supported by scientific facts.  Most online dictionaries, for example, associate superweeds with herbicide resistance caused by the suspected transfer of resistance genes from crops to weeds.  To date, there is no scientific evidence to indicate that crop to weed gene transfer is contributing to the herbicide resistance issues faced by farmers.
“Since superweed is now clearly part of the public vernacular, we decided to offer a definition that more clearly reflects the true source of herbicide resistance,” says Lee Van Wychen, Ph.D., WSSA science policy director. 
The science-based definition developed by WSSA focuses on the ability of weeds to develop resistance to virtually any treatment method that is used repeatedly – and exclusively.Superweed:  Slang used to describe a weed that has evolved characteristics that make it more difficult to manage due to repeated use of the same management tactic. Over-dependence on a single tactic as opposed to using diverse approaches can lead to such adaptations. The most common use of the slang refers to a weed that has become resistant to one or more herbicide mechanisms of action ( due to their repeated use in the absence of more diverse control measures.  Dependence on a single mechanical, biological, or cultural management tactic has led to similar adaptations (e.g. hand-weeded barnyardgrass mimicking rice morphology, dandelion seed production in a regularly mowed lawn, knapweed resiliency to gall fly biocontrol).
Two common misconceptions about a superweed are that they are the result of gene transfer from genetically altered crops and that they have superior competitive characteristics.  Both of these myths have been addressed by the Weed Science Society of America (WSSA) at WSSA has also created a variety of free educational materials and recommendations concerning herbicide resistance and how to avoid it, available at the term superweed is most often associated with weeds resistant to one or more herbicides, scientists point out that resistance can result from overdependence on mechanical, biological or cultural management tactics as well. 

 Repeated hand-weeding of barnyardgrass growing in rice fields, for example, has led to weeds that escape control by mimicking the appearance of rice plants.  Similarly, spotted knapweed has become increasingly resilient to the gall flies used repeatedly as a biological control.  Even dandelions growing in a regularly mowed lawn can evolve to avoid the mower, produce seeds and spread.WSSA’s new definition has been endorsed by the Aquatic Plant Management Society, Canadian Weed Science Society, North Central Weed Science Society, Northeastern Weed Science Society, Southern Weed Science Society and the Western Society of Weed Science.

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