Tuesday, June 07, 2016

۷7th June,2016 daily global rice enewsletter by ricpelus magazine-سات جون ۲۰۱۶

Rice traders disappointed over budget

June 05, 2016
KARACHI: Rice traders on Saturday expressed disappointment over the budget 2016/17 for not proposing measures to increase exports.Chief Patron Rice Exporters Association of Pakistan (REAP) Abdul Rahim Janoo, in a statement, said the exporters urged the government to declare rice sector as separate industry and place it under zero-rate regime. “However, the government didn’t include our recommendations into the finance bill,” Janoo said.   He also said rice export is the second largest earner of more than $2.2 billion foreign exchange per annum. But, the government has completely neglected this sector in the budget.
“REAP has sent several recommendations for the betterment of rice export trade, which were not considered by the government; even one very important suggestion of one window operation for the collection of all taxes is ignored,” he added.  The statement said the sales tax refund claims of rice exporters have been pending since long.“We also request the government to pay back exporter refunds at the earliest,” Janoo said. “We request the Prime Minister and Finance Minister to take urgent steps for the survival of this very import sector and include this sector into zero rate regime, so that our dream of achieving $4 billion up to the end of 2018 may come true,” said the statement


Pakistan's exports unlikely to reach 2018 target

Published: June 6, 2016
Govt expects only 10.7% rise in exports, way short of the required pace. PHOTO: REUTERS
ISLAMABAD: A projected 10.7% growth in exports for fiscal year 2016-17 runs contrary to the government’s ambitious plan to take export earnings to $35 billion by the end of 2017-18 under the three-year Strategic Trade Policy Framework.The $35-billion target, which was set just two months ago, needs a much more rapid rise in annual earnings and a meager 10.7% growth will not be sufficient to meet the goal, say experts. Under the annual development plan released by the federal government with the budget for 2016-17, exports in the new fiscal year are projected to rise 10.7% to $24.8 billion from an estimated $22.4 billion in 2015-16.

Imports are forecast to grow 14.7% to $45.2 billion in the upcoming fiscal year 2016-17 compared to an estimated $39.4 billion in the outgoing year 2015-16. Consequently, the trade deficit will be $20.4 billion in 2016-17 as opposed to a projected $17 billion in 2015-16.
However, experts point out that the government wasted an entire year in framing the Strategic Trade Policy Framework 2015-18 and now it has set only a 10.7% export growth target for the second year of the framework. In this scenario, the country will find it extremely difficult to hit $35 billion in export earnings by the end of fiscal year 2017-18.“The $35-billion export target is unlikely to be achieved by June 2018; there must be at least 30% growth each year to meet this goal,” commented an official of the Ministry of Commerce.
Trade-boosting steps
In the annual plan, however, the government has outlined a number of initiatives to forge regional connectivity in an effort to boost bilateral and multilateral trade with countries in the region.
The key measures include the resolution of outstanding issues in the Afghanistan-Pakistan Transit Trade Agreement and initiation of negotiations and early conclusion of the Afghanistan, Pakistan and Tajikistan Transit Trade Agreement.

Effective implementation of the International Road Transport (TIR) convention and reactivation of the Quadrilateral Transit Trade Agreement among Pakistan, China, the Kyrgyz Republic and Kazakhstan are also in the priority list of government initiatives.Apart from these, formulation of the Pakistan, Afghanistan and Central Asia regional economic integration framework through a regional trade office in the Ministry of Commerce is also part of the priority list. The government claims that the initiatives have been planned by taking all the stakeholders and relevant ministries on board.

For a short-term boost to exports, basmati rice, horticulture goods, meat products and jewellery will be given preference with focus on the markets of Iran, Afghanistan, China and the European Union.To market Pakistan’s high-quality rice, the government will facilitate the import of parboiling machinery and provide incentives for branding and certification. Assistance will also be ensured for developing warehousing facilities in Iran and Saudi Arabia.Basmati rice, kinnow and meat products can capture Iran’s market following the lifting of international sanctions from Tehran. Under a strategy, infrastructure will be developed for access to the Iranian market through the land route.
On the other hand, rice, cotton yarn, fabrics and garments could be exported to China through strategic interventions. The government will update the stakeholders on concessions under the China-Pakistan free trade agreement (FTA) and will put talks on second phase of the FTA on a fast track.

Under the annual plan, the government will provide 50% support for the import of new plant and machinery for specified under-developed regions. Besides, it will offer 100% mark-up support on the import cost of new plant and machinery for industrial units across the country.
A matching grant up to a maximum of Rs5 million will be provided for specified plant and machinery or other specified items to encourage innovation in the small and medium enterprises and export sectors.A common facility centre for the surgical instrument industry will also be established to push export of its products.
the writer is a staff correspondent
Published in The Express Tribune, June 6th, 2016


India’s exports dip in value, but volumes up; hope floats on demand

India’s merchandise exports may have suffered for a second straight year in 2015-16 in value terms, but volumes of outbound shipments rose in most cases

By: Banikinkar Pattanayak | Published: June 6, 2016 7:28 AM

So while the country’s overall exports plunged almost 16% in dollar term and 10% in rupee term, excluding oil, the exports dropped just 8.7% in dollar terms and just 2.1% in rupee terms.(Reuters)
India’s merchandise exports may have suffered for a second straight year in 2015-16 in value terms, but volumes of outbound shipments rose in most cases, suggesting the contraction in export value was driven more by a global commodity price crash than by a slowdown in overseas demand, showed a report by the directorate general of foreign trade (DGFT).
Commodities — including organic and inorganic chemicals, cotton yarn, basmati rice, base metals, dyes, paint, varnish and allied products — recorded growth in volume terms in 2015-16 (in the range of 3.8% to over 47%) even though their export value contracted from a year before (See the chart).
The DGFT report is based on an analysis of 168 principal commodities — excluding petroleum and bullion products — for which data are available in both value and volume terms. The value analysis in the report is in rupee terms.
This mirrored the phenomenon after the global financial crisis, when exports value suffered to a lower extent but volume growth remained almost stable (in 2009-10). In good years, though (for instance, 2010-11, when export grew nearly 40% in dollar terms), the rise in export value was driven by a broad-based and an even sharper rise in volumes, a senior commerce ministry official told FE.
Interestingly, certain items — value-added ones such as drug formulations, biologicals, bulk drugs, drug intermediaries and also items like spices, coffee, unmanufactured tobacco — managed to beat the global crash in commodity prices, as export value of these products rose in the last fiscal even when volumes shrank (in the range of 1.2-44.8%).
Global commodity prices plunged 28% in 2015-16 from a year before, driven by a sharp 40% crash in prices of oil, 20% in industrial metals and 7.5% in gold, according to a report by Yes Bank.
So, the maximum impact of the commodity crash was reflected in oil export value, which makes up for roughly 20% of the country’s total outbound shipments.
Consequently, roughly 55% of the $48-billion fall in India’s exports in the last fiscal was caused by lower petroleum exports.
So while the country’s overall exports plunged almost 16% in dollar term and 10% in rupee term, excluding oil, the exports dropped just 8.7% in dollar terms and just 2.1% in rupee terms.
Export of both goods and services, in real term, dropped 5.2% in 2015-16, compared with a 1.7% rise in the previous year, showed the latest GDP data.
According to the DGFT report, yet another category of items showed a rise in exports in both value and volume terms, defying a demand slowdown. These commodities include plastic raw materials, agro chemicals, cotton (including waste), sugar, tea, cereal preparations and ayush & herbal products.
Taking note of a slowdown in China and financial market volatility, the World Trade Organization in April trimmed its 2016 global trade growth forecast by 1.1 percentage points. It predicted that global trade would rise 2.8% in 2016, lower than its previous forecast of 3.9% announced in September last year. This will be the fifth straight year of trade growth below 3%, which is also much lower than the average annual expansion of 5% since 1990, according to the WTO data.

Monsoon will hit Kerala in 48 hours: Met

Vinson Kurian
Heavy rain likely for two weeks along West Coast region
Thiruvananthapuram, June 6:  
The India Meteorology Department has extended to Friday the outlook for heavy (7-11 cm) to very heavy (12-20 cm) rainfall at one or two places in Kerala as the countdown for the monsoon onset continues.
Conditions continue to be favourable for the onset of the South-West monsoon over the Kerala coast during the next 48 hours, it said in a bulletin.
The 24 hours ending Monday morning witnessed rain at most places in the State and at many places in Lakshadweep.
Stations reporting heavy rain included Vaikom (8 cm) and Piravom (7 cm). Other chief amounts of rainfall (in cm) are: Mancompu-6; Taliparamba and Kurudamannil-5 each; and Kayamkulam and Aluva - 4 each.
The Met has retained the outlook for strong westerly winds with speeds occasionally reaching up to 55 km/hr along and off the Kerala coast and over the Lakshadweep archipelago for the next 24 hours.
There is an emerging model consensus on the probability of heavy-to-very heavy rain along the West Coast for the first two weeks after the onset of the monsoon.
A cyclonic circulation over East-central Arabian Sea off Karnataka should keep the pot boiling here as it breathes in moisture-laden winds from the Arabian Sea and pumps rain along the coast.
Heading north

Projections by most models suggest that the circulation will carry with it the ‘leading edge’ of the monsoon further into the north into Goa, Konkan-Mumbai, and adjoining Gujarat.
On the other side, a persisting cyclonic circulation over the West-central Bay of Bengal off the Andhra Pradesh and South Odisha coast will keep the monsoon in good stead over the East Coast.
The presence of a cyclonic circulation on each side of the peninsula will ensure that most parts of the interior peninsula too will stay wet, with heavy rain forecast over Central Maharashtra and its neighbourhood.
Storm watch

The European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts is of the opinion that the cyclonic circulation off the Andhra Pradesh coast may intensify as it moves north-east towards the Gangetic West Bengal coast.
The agency has put a watch for intensification of the system into a minor storm by Saturday before it washes ashore over the Bangladesh coast the next day.
A storm tracker of the US Climate Prediction Centre agrees with this scenario but indicates a ‘splash-over’ at the Gangetic West Bengal coast instead of Bangladesh.
Meanwhile, ideal conditions for the onset and advance of the monsoon are evolving elsewhere with seasonal heat-wave conditions getting anchored over North-West India. A severe heat wave has been reported from isolated places over Rajasthan, while it was only slightly cooler over Gujarat and West and East Madhya Pradesh during the 24 hours ending on Monday morning.
The extent to which the North-West heats up will determine how low atmospheric pressure can get so that the monsoon winds can blow in from a high-pressure area in the Arabian Sea/Bay of Bengal.
(This article was published on June 6, 2016)


Golden rice: The malnutrition fighting crop

Golden Opportunity?
Over the past two decades, Bangladesh has remarkably managed to feed an increasing population better - the UN's Food and Agricultural Organization estimates that in 1993, the average Bangladeshi had access to just 2,000 calories per day, whereas today that number has increased to 2,450 calories per day. To a large extent, this success comes on the back of ever-higher rice production - rice makes up 70 percent of the average daily calorie intake.
Unfortunately, rice may make an empty stomach feel full, but it lacks many vital micronutrients. The latest survey shows three-quarters of all children deficient in vitamin A. This matters because studies show that every day an estimated 88 children in the country go blind due to vitamin A deficiency. And each year, the condition is responsible for 28,000 deaths of children under age 6. Furthermore, chronic undernourishment leads to stunting, which hinders cognitive and physical development and affects about six million Bangladeshi children.
One solution is to provide vitamin A in capsules, which reach about 63 percent of children. It would also be good to get more children to eat other foods rich in vitamin A, but this is a challenge of both education and income, bounded by the 70 percent of rice intake. But what if there was a cheap and effective way to exploit that rice to get more vitamin A to everyone?
New research by Uttam Deb, an economist at the International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics, suggests that investment in the development and dissemination of golden rice can help Bangladesh overcome vitamin A deficiency and its related blindness and deaths. Each taka spent on golden rice could do up to 329 takas of good.
Research on golden rice began in the 1990s as an effort to develop a type of rice that could counter malnutrition. The rice is fortified with beta-carotene, which is converted into vitamin A inside the body, and also gives the strain of rice it its colour. Because the rice is enhanced with micronutrients, widespread adoption of it holds the potential to combat the critical vitamin A deficiency in Bangladesh, which would be incredibly valuable for the country. 
Not only would the beta-carotene-fortified rice combat malnutrition, golden rice also has higher crop yields than many improved varieties. So benefits from its cultivation would arise both from increased crop productivity as well as the positive health effects. Furthermore, golden rice is a Boro rice, so the geographic areas where it is most likely to succeed in the field overlap considerably with the areas where nutrition deficiencies are highest in Bangladesh.
The costs to release golden rice for cultivation by 2018 include funding for research and development to continue to adapt it to the Bangladesh environment. It would also require paying costs for crop trials, extension services, seeds, marketing, and education. In total, the costs would be more than Tk. 800 million. 
When it comes to benefits, golden rice is not a panacea for fighting vitamin A deficiency in Bangladesh, it should rather be seen as a complement to existing initiatives that provide nutritional supplements to unreached people. Deb's analysis estimates that this strategy holds the potential to reduce vitamin A deficiency nationwide by roughly 3 percent, assuming that 30 percent of the population would adopt the rice as part of their regular diet. 
In reviewing Deb's research, Saul Morris of the Children's Investment Fund Foundation and Sue Horton of the University of Waterloo separately noted the lack of significant causal relationship between vitamin A deficiency and the greater risk of stunting. However, Deb points out that most studies show that fighting vitamin A deficiency can have a positive, if small, impact on stunting. He concludes that the cultivation and dissemination of golden rice could decrease stunting by up to 3 percent nationwide, perhaps preventing approximately 165,000 children from becoming stunted. When added together, the value of these health benefits is more than Tk. 175 billion. 
In addition, golden rice stands to increase rice yields by up to 10 percent. This estimated productivity gain should be taken as optimistic, given that scientists are also breeding other new, higher-yielding rice varieties that could benefit farmers in the absence of golden rice. But even if the average yield increases by just 5 percent when compared to the existing BRRI dhan29 rice variety, Bangladeshi farmers would still benefit by nearly Tk. 110 billion.
Overall, the health and productivity benefits combined could equal up to Tk. 285 billion. Each taka spent toward adoption of golden rice in Bangladesh could do up to 329 takas in benefits. The eminent panel of local and international experts, who reviewed all Bangladesh Priorities research, concluded that Deb's analysis may be on the optimistic side. However, they also noted that most of the costs to develop golden rice have already been incurred, that the variety holds potential to improve upon the status quo, and farmers can choose to use it or not. For those reasons, they found it a worthwhile strategy that could provide net benefits regarding both farmer productivity and health measures.
Is golden rice one of the smartest solutions for Bangladesh? Let us hear from you at https://copenhagen. fbapp.io/malnutritionpriorities. We want to continue the conversation about how to do the most good for every taka spent.
The writer is president of the Copenhagen Consensus Center, ranking the smartest solutions to the world's biggest problems by cost-benefit. He was named one of the world's 100 most influential people by Time magazine.

FEATURE: Rice straw proven effective to lengthen tomatoes’ freshness

  • June 05, 2016
  • Freddie G. Lazaro and Lord Ian R. Galano
 BATAC CITY, Ilocos Norte, June 5 (PIA) - - A group of researchers of the Mariano Marcos State University (MMSU) has proven the dried rice hays are effective stuff to lengthen the freshness of tomato fruits.
 Professor Maura S. Gabriel, the research team leader, said her group realized the conduct of the study in 2013 to address the perennial problem on large volume of wasted tomato due to fast rotting.
 “There is usually an oversupply of tomatoes in the locality from January to April. This compelled us to conduct a research on the best way to store tomatoes with the use of dried rice straws and paper storage box,” said Gabriel.
 During the period of study, the data gathering was done periodically to know the status of the quality of fruits: weight loss, rotting and shrivelling.

Through the use of rice straws in the improved storage technology research, the freshness of the tomato can now last for at most, 60 days.
 The result of the study showed the improved storage practice will help the farmers to lengthen the shelf life of the tomatoes to reach its off-season months ready for sale at a cost of Php60- P80 per kilo -  much higher than its market price of Php20.00 per kilo during regular season.
 The improved tomato storage technology involves appropriate and sequential procedures in all activities done from harvesting, selection of fruits, containers for packing, materials for incorporation, and the place of storage.
 Gabriel cited the improved tomato storage technology is convenient, easy to follow; cost-effective, top store tomatoes within two months; and  is effective for eliminating if not reducing tomato fruit rotting.
 The procedures for this technology started with: harvest of  the green mature tomato in the morning; selection of fruits wherein fruits must be selected free from insect damage and bruises; and  storing tomatoes into containers with dried rice straw with 2-3 centimeters thick placed in between layers of tomatoes.
A box must contain 8-10 kilograms. The packed tomatoes are then stored  in an open area, elevated using bamboo rack or “papag” to provide good ventilation.
2016 Riverina Rice Harvest: Stronger Yields Results


06/05/2016 | 07:14pm EDT
SunRice advises that the 2016 Riverina rice crop harvest is almost complete. At a forecast of 245,000 tonnes, it is smaller than last year's harvest of 690,215 tonnes, with the reduction due mainly to lower water allocations.
The 2016 harvest yields have outperformed five year averages across the Riverina, with yields for all regions and varieties averaging 11.0 tonnes per hectare compared to the five year average of 10.0 tonnes per hectare. This is the highest national average yield result achieved for the industry and reaffirms Australian rice growers as the most productive and efficient in the world: the average yield for countries that grow comparative temperate varieties is around seven tonnes per hectare.
Growers in the Murrumbidgee Irrigation Area (MIA) achieved standout increases, with some realising medium grain Reiziq yields exceeding 15 tonnes per hectare.
Yields are a critical element in generating gross profit margins for rice growers. SunRice estimates that, for growers who planted medium grain Reiziq in the MIA using the dry broadcast sowing method, this year's harvest generated an average gross margin of approximately $3,400 per hectare and $280 per megalitre. Please refer to the assumption and calculations at the end of this release*.
SunRice attributes the increased yields to favourable growing conditions, such as warmer weather and the use of more efficient farming techniques. The farming techniques have been developed by SunRice's research and development subsidiary, Rice Research Australia Pty Ltd (RRAPL), in close collaboration with the NSW Department of Primary Industries, Rural Industries Research and Development Corporation (RIRDC) and Rice Extension services.
Commenting on the 2016 harvest and outstanding yields, SunRice's Chairman, Mr Laurie Arthur, said:
'For rice growers who persevered with planting rice this year, despite low water allocations, the strong yields and subsequent returns represent a much needed and well deserved reward.
'The strong yields mean that overall harvest levels will exceed our initial expectations.
'These improved yields serve to reinforce independent research that demonstrates, on an overall farm system basis, return on capital and cash flow levels from planting rice are superior to other crop combinations. This is especially the case when comparing rice with other commodities such as cotton, wheat, canola and maize in the Riverina, some of which have experienced significant price volatility in recent times.
'SunRice is committed to facilitating our growers' profitability and to cementing rice's position as the leading summer crop in the Riverina.
'In addition to our focus on research and development, SunRice continues to introduce programmes to assist our farmers, including the recently announced fixed price / fixed volume contract for the 2017 crop, the GrowRice input finance scheme and greater payment flexibility.
'SunRice is experiencing significant demand for Australian rice across premium international markets. While SunRice has the flexibility to source rice internationally in lower Riverina crop years to meet this demand, which now exceeds 1.25 million tonnes per annum, Australian grown rice remains the cornerstone of our business and the foundation on which our brand and reputation is built.'
* This calculation assumes that an MIA rice grower using the dry broadcast sowing method: achieved an average yield of 12.52 tonnes per hectare; received a price of $415/tonne; incurred variable costs of $1,740/hectare; and used 12.25 ML of water per hectare. The dry broadcast sowing method accounted for the majority of the MIA crop harvested in 2016.
Yield (tonnes per hectare)
Price (A$)
Revenue (A$)
Total Variable Costs (A$)
Gross Margin (per hectare)
Water Use (ML)
Gross Margin (per ML)
Media inquiries: Sally Edgar
Sauce Communications
02 9640 8050 / 0425 247 133


Thailand observes "Rice and Farmers' Day"

Date : 6 มิถุนายน 2559
BANGKOK, 6 June 2016, (NNT) - Thailand on Sunday observed "Rice and Farmers' Day", by staging a seminar to assist those on the way to professional farming.

The Rice Department held the gathering at its headquarters in the Chatuchak district in Bangkok.

The seminar exemplified Mr. Nopadol Sawangyati, a rice farmer from Ayutthaya province who is a former engineer. The farmer said his success came from applying his knowledge in rice, soil, water, business management, and rational thinking.

Another agriculturalist from Surin, Kraiyoot Sawangsuk who is a law graduate from Thammasat University, said that he acquired his basic agricultural knowledge from a farmer who rented his land. Mr. Kraiyoot is now a facilitator in agricultural marketing who promotes organic crop cultivation among farmers. He said organic crops are specialist products that generate more income compared to crops from farms that utilize pesticides.

N. Korea's rice production to rise in 2016: U.N. report

2016/06/04 20:17
SEOUL, June 4 (Yonhap) -- North Korea's rice production this year is expected to rise to 1.6 million tons, a news media report said Saturday, apparently due to favorable weather conditions.
Rice production this year is estimated at 1.6 million tons, an increase from 1.3 million tons from a year earlier, U.S.-based media Voice of America (VOA) said, after quoting a report by the U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO).
"The North's rice output is expected to be more than 1.6 million tons this year," Kwon Tae-jin, an expert on the North's agriculture at the GS&J Institute, was quoted by the VOA as saying. "Weather, water and fertilizers were all well prepared."

   FAO forecast the country will additionally import 100,000 tons of rice this year to secure a total of 1.7 million tons, VOA said.
The agency further estimated the North to produce 2.5 million tons of corn this year, about the same level as last year, it said.

Global rice output still down due to El Niño

Ronnel W. Domingo | Philippine Daily Inquirer/ANN | Manila
Mon, June 6 2016 | 06:36 pm
Cows drink water at a pond during the dry season on the outskirts of Phnom Penh, Cambodia, April 26. (AP/Heng Sinith)
The prices of rice in the global market are still rising as lingering El Niño-related droughts continued to affect negatively the outlook for rice production in 2016, according to a United Nations-supervised monitoring system.
Based on the latest monthly market report of the Agricultural Market Information System ( Amis ), the rice production forecast for 2016 was lowered by one million tons to 494 million tons.
Still, the latest forecast is 1 per cent higher than the previous year’s estimated output of 490 million tons.
“Prospects for Bangladesh, Brazil and China deteriorate. Exporting countries are to account for much of the 1-per cent upturn in global output,” the Amis said.
On the other hand, the forecast trade volume was raised by 100,000 tons to 44.1 million tons. The new figure is still short of the estimated 44.7 million tons traded the previous year.
“[Trade is] still seen falling by 2 per cent year-on-year, on weaker import demand in Asia,” the Amis said.
The monitoring body noted overall conditions for the new season are favorable in Southeast Asia.
In the Philippines, rice growers have begun planting the wet-season crop, which usually accounts for about three-fifths of yearly output.
“Planting and field preparations are ongoing in Thailand, the Philippines and the US under favorable conditions,” the Amis said. “End of season conditions for [major exporter] Thailand’s dry season crop were poor due to the impacts of El Niño witnessed throughout the season.”
Last week, the Food and Agricultural Organization ( FAO ) said global food prices rose for the fourth straight month in May, this time including rice prices, but commodity markets are expected to be stable in the year ahead.
In a monthly update of its Food Price Index, the FAO said solid production prospects and abundant stocks pointed to “broadly stable” prices and supplies. In May, the FAO’s Food Price Index averaged 155.8 points, rising by 2.1 per cent from the 152.5 points in April.

In Memory, Gary DiGiuseppe 

USA Rice was saddened to learn of the passing of Gary DiGiuseppe, a longtime Arkansas journalist and newscaster, who was killed in a car accident last week on his way to work from his home in Maumelle, Arkansas. DiGiuseppe, 60, was the morning newscaster on KARN, a Little Rock radio station, and also provided daily newscasts for the Arkansas Radio Network, where he was once farm director.DiGiuseppe was a graduate of Eastern Michigan University and a member of the National Association of Farm Broadcasting since 1983. He worked at stations and networks in Fort Dodge, Iowa; Jefferson City, Missouri; and Milan, Michigan.Funeral services were held this past weekend in Michigan, but a memorial service is scheduled for 1:00 pm Friday, June 10 in Little Rock at the Roller-Chenal Funeral Home Chapel, 13801 Chenal Parkeway. USA Rice extends heartfelt condolences to the family and friends of Gary DiGiuseppe

U.S. Medium Grain Breaks into Hong Kong Fast Food Market 

HONG KONG, CHINA -- Chewy International Foods Ltd, a leading food supplier here that began importing U.S. medium grain rice four years ago, has developed a special brand name tailored for both the retail and food service markets, and has begun a promotion campaign featuring the U.S. rice.

Chewy is promoting the new brand, "Kumai", at Fairwood, the second largest fast food chain in Hong Kong with more than 140 outlets offering a wide variety of local Chinese and Western dishes.

Get it while it's hot
The promotion started last month and will run through September with three medium grain rice dishes to choose from including "Thick-cut Pork Cutlet with Calrose rice" at both lunch and dinner, and includes free samples of U.S. rice being distributed to customers in the restaurants.

"Chewy has helped us displace the Thai rice with U.S. medium grain at Fairwood restaurants for the duration of this promotion at least," said USA Rice Vice President of International Promotion Jim Guinn. "Fairwood serves more than 100,000 customers each day making this the largest fast food promotion for U.S. rice by far. Chewy is also promoting U.S. rice to a local sushi chain here with more than 60 outlets, making them a truly valued partner and ambassador for U.S.-grown rice."

Thai rice has dominated the Hong Kong market for years, but that may be changing. Guinn said Chewy is also promoting U.S. rice in mainstream supermarkets here because "they believe in the quality of our rice, wanted consumers to have more choices, and believe our rice will be accepted as a premium grade rice."

Farm Bureau Market Report


Cash Bids
New Crop

Riceland Foods

Cash Bids
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Soybean Comment

Soybeans surged again today, though prices closed well off the intraday highs. New crop soybeans closed back above resistance at $11 and continue to surge on improved demand particularly in the meal market. The current uptrend in soybeans continues to push prices into overbought territory. The market will remain volatile as we approach this next USDA supply and demand report and the final acreage report which will be released at the end of the month.


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Wheat Comment

Wheat prices closed higher as prices continue to find support in outside markets and recent wet weather across major growing regions. The condition report released after the close of the market failed to show a significant decline in the good to excellent rating on wheat which could be bearish for prices later this week. For now wheat now has support at $5 as prices continue to surge to their highest level since April 20.

Grain Sorghum

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Corn Comment

Corn prices continued their rally today as prices surged to new highs with new crop corn up another dime. The market co tune us to surge despite being technically overbought due to recent strength in demand and strong gains in other markets particularly soybeans. While some long term forecast point toward drier weather this summer the USDA current estimate is that 73% of the crop is in good to excellent condition. This is near last year and ahead of the 5-year average. While this is bearish for prices, corn shown little slowing of gains recently as it continues to offer producers a more profitable level than was expected earlier this season.




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Cotton Comment

Cotton futures posted gains again today. Heavy rains in Texas have resulted in the need for replants and further delayed the crop, which was already 10% behind the 5 year average for this week. Exports for the week came in at the top end of expectations at 124,900 running bales. A weaker dollar was also supportive. The market continues to have resistance at recent highs, 64.75 cents for July, and 64 cents for December.


Long Grain Cash Bids

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Rice Comment

Rice futures were posting gains today. July bounced off support at $10.76 last week, which has provided support for the market for about 5 weeks. This large crop could limit the upside potential of the market, however, dry conditions in other rice growing regions of the world could provide support. The market needs to see better export movement, though. Weekly export sales of 65,100 tons were down from 78,600 tons last week.


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Cattle Comment

Cattle price saw sharp losses today as the market continues to have difficulty maintaining gains in the face of strong grain prices. While cash prices remain at a significant premium to futures, weak beef prices and strengthening feed prices remain a negative for cattle prices.




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Hog Comment

Tin Can port handled N4m rice in nine months

June 6, 2016

The volume of imported rice coming in through one of the nation’s seaports has drastically declined due to dollar scarcity, with government revenue in form of duty falling sharply in the process, IFE ADEDAPO writes
The importation of rice, a major staple in Nigeria, has declined in volume due to the scarcity of foreign exchange occasioned by falling oil prices globally.Statistics obtained from the Tin Can Island Port in Lagos indicated that in the past nine months, the country imported 13.4 metric tonnes of the product.There are 1,000 kilogrammes in a metric tonne, while there are 20 bags of 50kg each in a metric tonne. On the average, each bag of rice costs N15,000. Therefore, each metric tonne of rice has a market value of N300,000.Therefore, 13.4 metric tonnes of rice have a market value of N4.02m at N300,000 per metric tonne.

This quantity of rice in its various forms only fetched the country N336,337 in tax payment from September 2015 to May 2016.In September 2015, the volume of rice imports was five metric tonnes; it declined to one metric tonne in October and peaked at five metric tonnes in November of the same year.In December, when rice import was expected to be high due to the festivities, only one metric tonne was imported through the Tin Can port. The volume further dipped to 0.5MT in February 2016, but rose slightly to 0.8MT in March, while 0.1MT was recorded for May 2016.There was no importation of the commodity through the port in January and April 2016.

The value of rice imports through the seaports has been on a steady decline since the first quarter of 2015.According to the foreign trade report released by the National Bureau of Statistics, semi-milled or wholly milled rice secured the fourth position of all imported commodities in the fourth quarter of 2014 based on its worth of N49.34bn.However, in the first three months of 2015, rice occupied the third position in the list of imported products with a value of N33.44bn, and dropped to the fifth position with a value of N25.38bn in the second quarter of the year.The value of rice imports between July and September 2015 declined by 61.8 per cent to N9.69bn, occupying the 15th position, the lowest for all the commodities imported through the seaports in the third quarter of last year.By the fourth quarter of the same year, rice had completely fallen out from the list of high value imported commodities into Nigeria.Rice was among the 41 items that the Central Bank of Nigeria excluded from official foreign exchange window in August 2015, leading to difficulties in accessing foreign exchange by importers and high cost of importation when forex is sourced from the black market at over N300 to a dollar.

Investigation showed that the price of the commodity had doubled between September 2015 and May 2016 from N7,500 per 50kg bag to an average of N15,000.When our correspondent visited Daleko, a major rice market in Lagos State, the traders explained that most of the rice being offered for sale were brought in from Cotonou, Benin Republic due to the ease of importation and payment of duty.A trader in the market, Alhaja Tawa Kasali, said the price of the commodity brought in from Cotonou was N5,000 per bag but the duty rate and high cost of transportation had made it expensive, adding that those who smuggled the product only risked their investments and lives.She said the price would have been more competitive if locally grown and milled varieties of the produce were available for sale at lower prices.However, due to the reduced rice imports, millers in the country are enjoying huge patronage due to rising demand.

The Personnel Manager, Umza International Limited, a rice mill, Mr. Ali Aliyu, admitted that business was booming and the company has had to turn down orders due to its inability to meet traders’ request.He said, “It gets to a point that we had to call some people that we wouldn’t be able to get them the quantity of rice they wanted. The demand is much more than expected but at the same time, we are not very happy for not being able to fulfil our customers’ demand.“But there is nothing we can do. We cannot force our machines to work beyond their capacities.”According to him, the changing trend of the business as well as the high cost of input has made it necessary to increase the price of the locally milled produce.Presently, he explained that the major factors contributing to the increase in price were poor electricity supply and high cost of paddy, a major raw material for the millers.

Aliyu explained, “We are presently selling for N10,700 per bag instead of the N9,000 we were selling a couple of days ago. A lot of factors contributed to the price increase. Sometimes we will stay for two or three days without having electricity.“And that means buying more diesel and the price of diesel is not as low as we expect. It sells for N150 per litre and the minimum price is N135; but before now, we were getting electricity for about 10 hours a day. The cost of production has doubled and the paddy rice is very difficult to get.”He added, “The farmers producing paddy rice are not producing much and there are so many people demanding for it now more than before. Due to the Federal Government’s forex policy, a lot of people will prefer to buy paddy, process and sell.“The price of the paddy has skyrocketed. It is now N8,000 per bag compared with N4,000 that we used to buy before. Therefore, we have to increase our price.

”As a form of intervention in the rice value chain, the knowledge management and communications specialist, GEMS4, a project of the United Kingdom’s Department for International Development, Ms. Enene Ejembi, explained that smallholder paddy farmers and large scale ones in Kano State were educated on the quality standards of paddy and supported to supply paddy in sufficient quantity to commercial millers.So far, she said the intervention, which began in 2015, had mobilised 1,199 rice farmers, and earned about £1,195,245 for them.“Activities to develop the rice value chain began with the mobilisation of farmers and aggregators through community engagement, rice fairs, communication campaigns and farm demonstrations by the Brent Group,” Ejembi added.