Thursday, May 07, 2015

7th May (May),2015 Daily Exclusive ORYZA RICE E-Newsletter

Global Rice Quotes
May 6th, 2015
Long grain white rice - high quality
Thailand 100% B grade          385-395           ↔
Vietnam 5% broken    355-365           ↔
India 5% broken         370-380           ↔
Pakistan 5% broken    375-385           ↔
Myanmar 5% broken   415-425           ↔
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 350-360           ↔
Vietnam 25% broken 335-345           ↑
Pakistan 25% broken 330-340           ↔
Cambodia 25% broken           410-420           ↔
India 25% broken       345-355           ↔
U.S. 15% broken         470-480           ↔
Long grain parboiled rice
Thailand parboiled 100% stxd            375-385           ↓
Pakistan parboiled 5% broken stxd    390-400           ↑
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%          885-895           ↔
Vietnam Jasmine         480-490           ↓
India basmati 2% broken        NQ      ↔
Pakistan basmati 2% broken   NQ      ↔
Cambodia Phka Mails             815-825           ↔
Thailand A1 Super      315-325           ↔
Vietnam 100% broken            310-320           ↑
Pakistan 100% broken stxd    285-295           ↔
Cambodia A1 Super   350-360           ↔
India 100% broken stxd         270-280           ↔
Egypt medium grain brokens NQ      ↔
U.S. pet food 370-380           ↔
Brazil half grain          NQ      ↔
Medium grain milled
U.S. Calrose 4% broken          845-855           ↔
Egypt medium grain 6%         NQ      ↔
All prices USD per ton, FOB vessel,

Thailand Continues to Enjoy Government Rice Subsidies but Faces Uphill Battle on Export Price Competition, Suggests USDA Post

May 06, 2015
The USDA post forecasts that Thailand will export about 11 million tons rice in 2015 and expects that Thailand rice export will accelerate in the second half of the year due to the sales of the government stocks, according to a recent report. The report projects parboiled rice exports, which account for around 30% of total rice exports, will increase in coming the months due to higher demand from Nigeria.

However, the Post projects that, "Price competition between Thai and Vietnamese rice will continue to put downward pressure on world rice prices.” In first quarter of 2015, Thailand has exported about 2.1 million tons rice, according to the USDA Post, down about 4% from the same period last year due to price competition from Vietnam rice.Thailand government has sold about 1.3 million metric tons of rice stocks, valued at 16 billion baht (about $499 million) in first quarter of 2015. However total quantity was well below from planned about 3 million metric tons.
The government has used a variety of measures to support rice farmers, including: an On-Farm Pledging Scheme (albeit at lower prices than the previous rice schemes under Yingluck which accumulated huge tonnage), the Income Support Measure (distributed $192 per hectare to 3.6 million farmers, totaling $1.2 billion), the Off-farm Employment Assistant Program (designed to help farmers affected by government imposed water restrictions, a Rice Insurance Program (subsidizing insurance rates, protecting farmers from natural disasters), and the Interest Subsidy Program (subsidizing borrowing rates for traders to hold stocks).

Asia Rice Quotes Mixed Today

May 06, 2015
Thailand rice sellers lowered their quotes for parboiled rice by about a $5 per ton to about $375 - $385 per ton. Vietnam rice sellers increased their quotes for 25% broken rice and 100% broken rice by about a $5 per ton and $10 per ton to about $335 - $345 per ton and $310 - $320 per ton, respectively, and lowered their quotes for Jasmine rice by about a $10 per ton to about $480 - $490 per ton today. Pakistan rice sellers increased their quotes for Parboiled rice by about a $5 per ton to about $390 - $400 per ton. India rice sellers kept their quotes mostly unchanged today.
5% Broken Rice
Thailand 5% rice is indicated at around $375 - $385 per ton about a $20 per ton premium on Vietnam 5% rice  shown at around $355 - $365 per ton.
India 5% rice is indicated at around $370 - $380 per ton, about a $5 per ton discount to Pakistan 5% rice shown at around $375 - $385 per ton.
25% Broken Rice
Thailand 25% rice is shown at around $350 - $360 per ton, about a $15 per ton premium on Vietnam 25% rice shown at around $335- $345 per ton, up about a $5 per ton from yesterday.
India 25% rice is indicated at around $345 - $355, about a $15 per ton premium on Pakistan 25% rice shown at around $330 - $340 per ton.
Parboiled Rice
Thailand parboiled rice is indicated at around $375 - $385 per ton, down about a $5 per ton from yesterday.
India parboiled rice is indicated at around $360 - $370 per ton, about a $30 per ton discount to Pakistan parboiled rice shown at around $390 - $400 per ton, up about a $5 per ton from yesterday.
100% Broken Rice
Thailand broken rice, A1 Super, is indicated at around $315 - $325 per ton, about a $5 per ton premium on Vietnam 100% broken rice shown at around $310 - $320 per ton, up about a $10 per ton from yesterday.
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 Slightly Lower Overnight as Technical Bearishness Continues to Mount

May 06, 2015
Chicago rough rice futures for Jul delivery are currently seen paused 2.5 cents per cwt (about $1 per ton) lower at $9.950 per cwt (about $219 per ton) ahead of floor trading in Chicago. The other grains are seen trading mixed: soybeans are currently seen about 0.1% lower, wheat is listed about 0.6% higher and corn is currently noted 0.8% higher.U.S. stock index futures pointed to a firm open for Wall Street shares Wednesday, following the previous day's sharp falls and ahead of some key data releases as Treasury yields rose. The ADP Employment Report showed 169,000 jobs were created in April, below expectations. The report, which could foreshadow Friday's employment report, was expected to record a modest rise in the rate of job creation to around 200,000 in April, according to analysts.
Unit labor costs for the first quarter rose 5% but productivity fell 1.9%, a touch more than the expected 1.8% decline. The report is central to the Federal Reserve's assessment of underlying price pressures. Other key events include a panel discussion between Fed chief Janet Yellen and International Monetary Fund Managing Director Christine Lagarde on monetary policy at 9:15 a.m. ET in Washington. European equities were higher in morning trade on Wednesday as investors reacted to a slew of earnings reports and new economic data.
U.S. stocks closed about 1% lower on Tuesday as investors eyed higher bond yields, mixed domestic data and renewed concerns over Greece. The tech-heavy Nasdaq under-performed, falling about 1.5% to close below 5,000. Gold is currently trading about 0.2% higher, crude oil is seen trading about 2.2% higher,  and the U.S. dollar is currently trading about 0.6% lower at 7:30am Chicago time.

Oryza Afternoon Recap - Chicago Rough Rice Continue to Tumble as Market Lacks Buying Interest and Charts Remain Bearish; Wheat Reverses Yesterday's Losses

May 06, 2015
Chicago rough rice futures for Jul delivery settled 18 cents per cwt (about $4 per ton) lower at $9.795 per cwt (about $216 per ton). Rough rice futures continued lower as the market searches for levels that attract demand. Technically the market remains bearish and there is little sign that the current downtrend is nearing an end. The other grains finished the day with mixed results as soy products slipped, while corn continued higher and wheat looked to erase losses sustained yesterday; Soybeans closed about 0.2% lower at $9.8250 per bushel; wheat finished about 2.7% higher at $4.7925 per bushel, and corn finished the day about 1.5% higher at $3.6650 per bushel.
U.S. stocks traded lower after a positive open on Wednesday as investors weighed comments from the Fed Chair on valuation amid higher yields and energy prices.

 In the afternoon, Atlanta Federal Reserve bank president Dennis Lockhart said he is hopeful growth will pick up but needs more evidence, particularly from consumer spending. Fed Chair Janet Yellen said on Wednesday morning in a conversation with IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde that equity valuations are generally quite high. U.S. equities followed European stocks lower on currency and bond market moves. The U.S. dollar traded more than 1 percent lower against major world currencies, with the euro topping $1.13 for the first time since the end of February.

Stocks sold off on her remarks before briefly recovering to trade mildly lower. In other economic news, the ADP Employment Report showed 169,000 jobs were created in April, below expectations. The report, which could foreshadow Friday's employment report, was expected to record a modest rise in the rate of job creation to around 200,000 in April, according to analysts. The Dow Jones Industrial Average traded down 115 points, or 0.64%, at 17,813. The S&P 500 traded down 11 points, or 0.51%, at 2,078, with utilities leading eight sectors lower and materials and energy the only advancers.

The Nasdaq traded down 28 points, or 0.56%, at 4,911. Gold is trading about 0.3% lower, crude oil is seen trading about 0.5% higher, and the U.S. dollar is seen trading about 1% lower at about  1:00pm Chicago time.Tuesday, there were 853 contracts traded, up from 714 contracts traded on Monday. Open interest – the number of contracts outstanding – on Tuesday increased by 118 contracts to 10,827.

Thailand Rice Farmers to Receive Discount Coupons to Buy Seed and Fertilizer

May 06, 2015
Thailand economic minister has agreed today to distribute coupons or cards to rice farmers allowing them to claim a discount on the purchase of cultivation materials, including seed and fertilizer, according to the local media. He told to local media that the discount method will be more effective than handing out cash subsidies to the farmers. Meanwhile, Thailand's Prime Minister has ordered to the Ministry of Agriculture and Cooperatives to implement this program.Thailand government is also planning to convince some rice farmers to switch sugarcane crop in upcoming crop season to ensure good prices for rice. The government is also offering 1 million baht (about $29,933) in aid to each of about 3,000 sub-districts where rice growers have suffered from water shortages.

Indian Monsoon May Disappoint, Reducing Rice Production and Future Exports, Says USDA Post

May 06, 2015
Cuba’s main rice crop, which accounts for about 60-70% of the nation’s rice production, is typically planted between March and July and this year there are concerns that water supplies are insufficient.  In a GIEWS Country Brief, FAO reports that “Sowing operations are already reported to have been hindered by limited supplies of water in major reservoirs, particularly over the eastern-most provinces of the country.”

FAO estimates 2015 paddy production at 632,000 tons (about 425,000 tons basis milled), nearly unchanged from 2014.  This is below the USDA’s paddy production estimate of about 700,000 tons (about 455,000 tons basis milled). 
Download/View On-Line the above News in pdf format,just click the following link
7th May (May),2015  Daily Exclusive ORYZA RICE  E-Newsletter          

India’s upcoming monsoon season may suffer from insufficient rains, potentially reducing crop production including rice, the USDA Post reports in its May 2015 India Grain and Feed Update. Last month the Indian Metrological Department (IMD) predicted the 2015 monsoon will be 93% of normal, with a margin of error of 5%.  The next forecast will be in June, the start of the June-September monsoon season, which provides about 70% of the nation’s annual rainfall. The 2014 was 12% below normal, affecting grain production, so the concern is that another deficient monsoon could further impact grain production.   

The USDA estimates rice production for the 2014/15 marketing year (October to September) to be 102.5 million tons, down from 106.54 million tons the previous year.  This decline in production is forecast to reduce carryover stocks and exports. The USDA Post forecasts 2015/16 rice exports to decline to 8.5 million tons from 10.2 million tons in 2014/15. India is also expected to be a net importer of wheat this year as untimely rains in March and April of this year damaged production.
Cuba Rice Crop is Fac

6th May(Wednesday) ,2015 Daily Global Rice E-Newsletter

Rice grower seeks fiscal intervention on imports
Published on Wednesday, 06 May 2015 01:27
A LEADING local rice producer, Kilombero Plantation Limited, Chief Executive Officer, Carter Coleman wants a Common External Tariff against rice imports into East African Community to stand at 75 per cent.Mr Coleman said the 75 per cent CET will help discourage rice imports and give local producers a guarantee of reliable market.Mr Coleman who is a member of Rice Council of Tanzania said they lobbied for the maintenance of 75 per cent CET, however East African Community settled for 35 per cent only."RCT has previously recommended strongly to the President's Office that the EAC maintain the 75 per cent CET," Coleman pointed out.He said despite Kenya's bilateral agreement with Pakistan to trade rice with tea, local rice farmers are exporting to Burundi, Uganda and Kenya.
"In Kenya, it is very difficult if not impossible to compete with Pakistani rice which attracts 35 per cent CET and Uganda," he noted saying the country's rice exports to Uganda fetch 75 per cent duty which is barred in Rwanda.Earlier this year, EAC Finance Ministers meeting in Nairobi agreed to increase CET on rice imports from 25 per cent to 35 per cent."We are protecting our local producers because these commodities can be produced locally," said Finance Minister Ms Saada Mkuya Salum.Ms Salum challenged local rice producers to increase their volumes and meet growing domestic demand which has at times prompted authorities to allow imports which end up hurting them.Commenting on the move immediately after the EAC decisions, former Minister of Agriculture, Food Security and Cooperatives, Eng Christopher Chiza opposed the move.
Engineer Chiza said the private sector's arguments that the CET for rice could have been raised to 75 per cent as is the case with Uganda, is valid.Eastern African Farmers Federation Chief Executive Officer, Stephen Muchiri last week told East African Cooperation Minister, Dr Harrison Mwakyembe that unscrupulous commodity traders are blending the Pakistan imported rice with locally produced rice which is facing tariff restrictions in the region."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.During a meeting of EAFF senior officials led by its president, Philip Kiriro, Muchiri told Dr Mwakyembe that the Pakistan rice has affected Kenyan rice farmers who cannot enjoy benefits of the EAC Trade Protocol because of problems with certificate of origin.
"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.

Precise genome editing may improve rice crops

May 6th, 2015 Jennifer Dimas
Rice, a staple crop that feeds half the world's people, may be improved by a new project that harnesses the power of genome editing.The project, led by Cornell University researcher Adam Bogdanove and funded by a four-year, $5.5 million National Science Foundation grant, will serve as proof of principle that genome editing can be used to optimize quantitative traits, such as height, yield and disease resistance. Very little is known about quantitative traits expressed to varying degrees in different individual plants, as they require complex orchestration of many genes. Genome editing is a new technique that allows researchers to precisely target, cut, remove and replace DNA in a living cell.Jan Leach, professor of Bioagricultural Sciences and Pest Management at Colorado State University, is one of the co-investigators working on the new study with principal investigator Bogdanove.

The editing technique will focus on such traits as disease resistance and tolerance to acidic soils. On average, 15 percent of rice yield is lost worldwide to rice diseases, according to Leach, who is also a University Distinguished Professor at CSU. Leach and her team will receive $930,000 for their contributions to the project.Scientists are in a race against time to double the production of cereal crops, such as rice, on limited arable land by 2050, when the global population could reach 9.5 billion."We have the ability to open the genome like a book, go to a certain chapter and a specific word and change the word or correct its spelling," said Bogdanove, adding that in this case the words are the DNA sequences that make up genes.

Bogdanove, a professor of plant pathology and plant-microbe biology, is also a co-creator of TALENs, a key molecular tool used in genome editing.The researchers already have identified particular stretches of DNA as responsible for the quantitative traits of interest. For example, CSU's Leach, a plant pathologist, has identified several candidate sequences for disease resistance, and will use the genome editing process to test whether those sequences enable rice to survive diseases."What is so beautiful about genome editing is that we can relatively easily make very precise changes in the DNA sequences to test their importance and their usefulness for crop improvement," said Leach. "Traditional breeding to select for quantitative traits is exceedingly difficult and slow. Genome editing would greatly expedite the process.

"For their work, the researchers will use a newly released dataset for 3,000 rice genomes. Brad Tonnessen, a CSU graduate student working on the project, will test this set and other rice genomes for sequences that are associated with beneficial disease resistance traits.The researchers also hope to develop new lines of rice that breeders could use to address diseases and acid soils.Additionally, the project team will develop related educational materials for middle and high school students and undergraduates, provide genome editing training workshops for plant biologists, and continually update a public project website, researchers are careful to note that genome editing should not be confused with genetic engineering; genome editing entails making precise changes, whereas genetic engineering is "akin to inserting a particular sentence somewhere at random into the book," Bogdanove said.
Provided by Colorado State University

This Science News Wire page contains a press release issued by an organization mentioned above and is provided to you “as is” with little or no review from Phys.Org staff.

I did not grant waivers to rice importers – Adesina

Timothy Enietan-Matthews
The Minister of Agriculture, Dr. Akinwunmi Adesina, has denied ever granting duty waivers or recommending exceptions for rice importers contrary to stories making the rounds.According to the minister, who appeared before the House of Representatives ad hoc committee on Tuesday, it is rather some smart importers that attempted to circumvent government’s rice production policy by importing huge quantities of the commodity in excess of their approved quota.“Nigeria is not a banana republic; we have laws here and the laws must work.

“All duties and levies must be paid to the last kobo. Importers must pay the appropriate duties,” the minister declared.Speaking on the policy, Adesina said its aim was to cut imports and encourage local production of rice by allocating quotas to importers, adding that the policy also provided that any importer who chooses to import more than its allotted quota would have to pay 70 per cent of duties and levies to the Federal Government.He told the lawmakers that some importers did not only breach their quotas, they also failed to pay the duties for the excess imports.It will be recalled that the House of Representatives had constituted the Leo Ogor led ad hoc committee to probe alleged fraud being perpetrated by rice importers who have failed to pay their due duties and levies to government. The minister was equally accused of aiding the non-payment of duties and levies and that he also granted waivers to the importers.

Adesina however declared that he had been “transparent so far” with the rice policy, adding that the companies simply went ahead to import rice in excess of their quota even before the approval.He also informed the committee that he got to understand later that the importers had an agreement with the Nigeria Customs Service to pay the duties and levies on the excess imports.He said: “Some imported 100,000 metric tonnes; 300,000 above their quotas. This is now the duty of the Customs; I set the policy but I don’t collect the money.

They should have paid for the excess import even before taking the rice out of the ports,” adding that he was surprised that he was being given a bad name even when the applicable rules were quite explanatory. This, he said, made him direct all those concerned to pay all outstanding levies.“I don’t know why the hunter has become the hunted. On January 2, 2015, I directed that companies must pay the N36bn. I told the Customs in a letter to apply the duties accordingly”, Adesina added.The former minister observed that the importers were afraid that if the progress being made continued “this way in the next two years, these companies fear that they will be out of business

NSF Grants Cornell $5.5M for Genome Editing in Rice

May 06, 2015

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb) — Cornell University announced this week that scientists led by Adam Bogdanove have received a $5.5 million grant from the National Science Foundation for a gene editing project in rice.The four-year grant will try to provide proof of concept that genome editing can be used to address important measurable agricultural traits in rice, including plant height, yield, disease resistance, and soil acidity tolerance. The scientists will develop a genome editing platform for crop breeding as well as new lines of rice expressing the improved traits.Bogdanove said that the scientists have already identified particular stretches of DNA as candidates for the quantitative traits of interest.

The project will use data released in 2014 from an international project that sequenced 3,000 different rice genomes from around the world.The grant did not mention the use of any particular genome editing technologies. Bogdanove is co-creator of transcription activator-like effector nucleases (TALENs); Daniel Voytas, a professor at the University of Minnesota, chief scientific officer at Cellectis Plant Sciences and co-developer of TALENs, is also listed as a co- investigator on the grant. Rice genetics researcher Susan McCouch is also a co-investigator and a professor at Cornell.In 2011, the NSF awarded researchers at Cornell and the University of California, Riverside $4.8 million to study transposable elements in the rice genome.

The Importance Of Silicon In Rice Production

In Rice Production Silicon is not only useful for computer chips but also an important micronutrient for rice crops, scientists say. Asian Scientist Newsroom | May 6, 2015 | In the Lab AsianScientist (May 6, 2015) - 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 has showed that it is beneficial for the growth of many plants, including important crops such as rice, wheat and barley. For instance, Si has been found to enhance 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. The study, published in the journal Plant and Soil, investigated Si cycling and budgets on the farm level in the Laguna province of the Philippines. The data shows that 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 and was thus assumed not to be an 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 focused 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. However, this is not done by all of the farmers that were interviewed within the LEGATO project. Some of them remove part of the straw and use it as fertilizer on vegetable fields instead. 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 rice fields. The article can be found at: Klotzbücher et al. (2015) Forms And Fluxes Of Potential Plant-available Silicon In Irrigated Lowland Rice Production (Laguna, the Philippines). ——— Source: Legato Project; Photo: Madeleine Deaton/Flickr/CC. Read more from Asian Scientist Magazine at:

Think Rice Education Program Earns High Marks from Teachers

Welcome back, rice!
ARLINGTON, VA -- In honor of March National Nutrition Month, USA Rice distributed the Think Rice educational lesson plan to more than 2,800 elementary schools in rice-growing counties across the six states. USA Rice partnered with the award-winning curriculum experts at Young Minds Inspired (YMI) to develop the program to meet national standards for 3rd - 6th grade students in social studies, science, and nutrition. As of mid-April, the program reached an estimated 9,000 teachers and 330,000 students and families.

 "Teachers were encouraged to return comment cards measuring use, effectiveness, and appeal of the program, and we received a 32 percent response rate, which is right on par with other YMI education plans," said Katie Maher, USA Rice's manager of domestic promotion. "What's even better, is that there were 500 randomly distributed surveys and 74 percent of those were returned, which is well above average."

Ninety-seven percent of teachers rated the program's educational effectiveness as "good-excellent." The Think Rice kit contained three student activities, a classroom poster, and a teacher's guide. The student activities covered topics including: the history of rice in America, the environmental benefits of growing and eating U.S. rice, and the important role U.S. rice plays in a balanced diet.Of the teachers who received the materials, 82 percent used (or plan to use) the Think Rice materials, 89 percent displayed the wall poster, and 87 percent shared (or plan to share) the program with other teachers.    The program materials were downloaded more than 1,300 times from YMI's website and will be available indefinitely so teachers from all around the country can use the activities. Below are a few quotes from teacher comment cards and surveys:
"It's very important for our kids to know where rice comes from and its nutritional importance.

Thank you." - CA teacher
"Wonderful program. Kids enjoyed it. Will use it next year too!" - AR teacher
"Enjoyed the poster. Its message is clear and has great information to share." - MO teacher
"Good lesson because it ties in nicely with nutrition and MyPlate too!" - MS teacher
"Great information. This is a great way to get children interested." - LA teacher
"An excellent program. My co-teachers enjoyed it as well. Thank you." -- TX teacher
"It's great to hear that the Think Rice program is a beneficial tool for teachers to integrate into the curriculum," said Byron Holmes, chairman of the USA Rice Nutrition Subcommitee. "This is something we can use for years to come because teachers have confirmed its educational quality and because it covers important topics for the U.S. rice industry, which are coincidentally topics of great interest to teachers and students."
 Contact:  Deborah Willenborg (703) 236-1444

CCC Announces Prevailing World Market Prices 
WASHINGTON, DC -- The Department of Agriculture's Commodity Credit Corporation today announced the following prevailing world market prices of milled and rough rice, adjusted for U.S. milling yields and location, and the resulting marketing loan-gain (MLG) and loan deficiency payment (LDP) rates applicable to the 2014 crop, which became effective today at 7:00 a.m., Eastern Time (ET).  Prices are unchanged from the previous announcement.

World Price

Milled Value ($/cwt)
Rough ($/cwt)
Rough ($/cwt)

This week's prevailing world market prices and MLG/LDP rates are based on the following U.S. milling yields and the corresponding loan rates:

U.S. Milling Yields
Loan Rate

The next program announcement is scheduled for May 13, 2015.

CME Group/Closing Rough Rice Futures   
CME Group (Prelim):  Closing Rough Rice Futures for May 6
Net Change

May 2015
 - $0.175
July 2015
- $0.180
September 2015
- $0.180
November 2015
- $0.180
January 2016
- $0.175
March 2016
- $0.175
May 2016
- $0.175

Farmers battle blackbirds to save rice crops
Posted: May 06, 2015 5:02 AM PSTUpdated: May 06, 2015 6:19 AM PST
Posted by Jessi Turnure

CRAIGHEAD COUNTY, AR (KAIT) - April showers delayed planting for Arkansas farmers, but now seeds are in the ground."A lot of progress has been made in the last week and a half," said Brookland farmer Scott Gibson. "The equipment we have now can catch us up in a hurry."However, while farmers play catch up, they have a new pest to worry about: blackbirds. Gibson said it seems these birds were waiting for this moment to arise.During planting season, blackbirds will dig up the seeds and pull up the rice plants in their early stages. 

The birds are known to destroy anywhere from 20 to 80 acres of rice fields.Gibson said nothing can be done to stop the blackbirds once the seed is in the ground, but farmers can use bird repellent on their rice seeds.According to the University of Arkansas Division of Agriculture, farmers can use AV-1011 bird repellent through a Section 18 emergency exemption until July 15 to battle the blackbirds. However, Gibson said the AV-1011, or any bird repellent for that matter, is not worth it. "With the products available now, we feel there isn't enough scientific evidence to support the expense of using them compared to the amount of expense we feel we're getting from the damage," he said. 

Gibson said he has been fortunate enough to only see minimal damage from blackbirds. "It varies area to area and year to year," he said. "It could all change at a moment's notice. You never know what's gonna blow in."

Mending fences with Iran, despite the US, is not a bad idea for India

Anilesh S. Mahajan       Last Updated: May 6, 2015  | 20:22 IST

As shipping minister Nitin Gadkari lands in the Iranian capital of Tehran, the buzz of him signing an agreement to develop the Chabahar port is palpable. This port will give India an alternative - and easier - route to Afghanistan and Central Asia.
The government led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi has hastened the process, and decided to use the books of Jawaharlal Nehru Port Trust and Kandla Port Trust to fund the development of the port.The Indian government also decided to ignore warnings from the US. In fact, at a public function in New Delhi on Wednesday, the US Ambassador to India, Richard Verma, reiterated that countries engaging with Iran must wait for the outcome of Iran's discussions with the P5+1 group - including the United States, Russia, China, France, Britain, and Germany.

The next round of discussion will start on May 12 at Geneva with the European Union, and the rest of the partners will join on May 15. The aim is to finish talks on June 30. Most observers expect a positive outcome.New Delhi believes that the development of the port does not violate UN sanctions, and India is not obliged to follow what US and EU sanctions say.This port will give Iran an opportunity to open up to the western world once the sanctions are lifted. PM Modi is hurrying things up before Tehran gets time to rethink on this deal. This sort of co-operation will help both Iran and India, as the Persian country will get a boost up during the negotiations, which will help Modi during his forthcoming China visit.

In fact, India also wanted to sign another pact to seize development rights of Farzad B block, but Iran is not keen to allow gas marketing rights.The earlier NDA government led by Atal Behari Vajpayee had envisaged this project in 2003, but it was delayed because of several issues. During the UPA government, India not only reduced oil imports from Iran, but also ran into rough weather with Tehran.Last year, Iran increased import duty on Indian Basmati rice from 10 per cent to 45 per cent.

This put rice traders and farmers from Punjab, Haryana and western UP in a precarious situation. The area under basmati increased during the kharif season of 2014 to 8.16 lakh hectares (20.40 lakh acres), up from 5.50 lakh hectares in 2013, largely on the possibilities of the Iran market. After the import duty increase, prices had crashed. But now when the farmers are ready to sow this crop again, a revival of good relations with Tehran will boost their confidence.What is more important is that this port can increase New Delhi's position in regional diplomacy.

The Modi government is pushing its weight behind this. In fact, last week a senior US diplomat suggested that India could help bring Syria's President Bashar al-Assad and the rebels on to the talking table to end Syria's crisis. This was a big shift from India's continuous stance of staying away, and the foreign office here distanced itself from this, by calling the statement a misunderstanding.India under Modi is looking at a larger role in West Asia. Iran could be an opening window. This allows India to sit at the mouth of Gulf of Hurmuz and cut freight paid by traders - who are keen on West and Central Asian markets - by 30 per cent. Tehran also wants New Delhi to assist in developing a free trade zone near Chabahar.

This port is a few miles away from Gwadar (a port in Pakistan being developed with China's help), and makes more sense for India to sit there. This is strategically important as well.Chinese premier Xi Jinping agreed to invest $46 billion in Pakistan to develop road infrastructure, energy and improve connectivity with all important cities including the strategically important Gwadar port. Chinese Overseas Ports Holding Company has taken over the responsibility to develop this port, and agreed to help Pakistan in developing a free economic zone there, including setting up of a refinery there. Recently, the Pakistani government informed its Senate about acquiring 2,281 acres of land to develop this region. China is also helping Pakistan in completing the $2-billion Iran-Pakistan pipeline, along with laying another pipeline from Gwadar to Kashgar in Xingjian.


The problem for India is, this gives their bête noire Pakistan an edge, especially on how to deal with Afghanistan. Despite this, India

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6th May(Wednesday) ,2015   Daily Global  Rice E-Newsletter