Saturday, June 03, 2017

Free WEBINAR"Basmati, Prospective & Challenges" (regional perspectives) 13-June-2017 ,1130-1330 Hrs IST

                    Free WEBINAR 
Title          "Basmati, Prospective & Challenges" (regional perspectives) 
Date             13-June-2017 
Time            1130-1330 Hrs IST
                     11:00am-13:00pm (PST)
·         Dr.Hamid Malik
·         Chief Editor,Riceplus Magazine
·         CEO Indus Pak Corporation

 Salient features 
ü  Free of cost               
ü  No physical presence      
ü  You  can log in through your computer or smart phone
ü  You can ask live questions
ü  You can share your views
ü  10 experts from different regions, will deliver their views 
   India 1, UAE 1, Iran 1, Saudi Arabia 1, 
   Pakistan 6(south zone 2, North zone 2, Institutions 2)     
ü  40-50 participants on line
ü  Sharing of recorded webinar
Note: 50  early  birds  will  be registered  & will  be  sent  link  to  participate
           Participants will be provided technical support for joining the webinar


An attendee may disconnect from on-line session due to any technical reason i.e.
fluctuation in Internet bandwidth or power failure of PC etc. In that case don't be
panic, just click the joining link again and you will be reconnected to the session. 
If it demands for "Meeting ID", enter: 295-193-388
·  Please make sure that micro phone and speakers of your PC are functioning properly. A head set is recommended

Sponsor Induss Pak Corp ,
                  Rice Plus Magazine  
                  Institute of Research Promotion (IRP)                                

For registration & Rice Brand Advertisement, 
/Mujahid Ali,       "Rice Plus" Magazine, 0321-3692874,  042-35845551(11-16 Hrs).       
 Hamid Malik        0092-300 414349

3rd June,2017 daily global,regional and local rice e-newsletter by riceplus magazine

The part of rice we don't eat may be highly nutritious

June 1, 2017
Rice bran, the outer covering of the rice grain, has high nutritional value and is a rich source of proteins, fats, minerals and micronutrients such as B vitamins, according to a study published in the open access journal Rice. Researchers at Colorado State University suggest that rice bran, which is removed from whole grain rice during processing and used as animal feed, could have benefits for human health and nutrition.
Professor Elizabeth Ryan, the corresponding author said: "A single serving of rice bran - 28 grams according to USDA - delivers more than half of a person's daily requirements of important vitamins such as thiamine, niacin and vitamin B6. Traditionally, rice bran is thought to be a cheap fiber source and only considered useful as a source of lipids, for example as cooking oil. It has not been used much in human health and nutrition because it is considered an animal feed but its high nutritional value warrants greater public health attention."
The researchers used an approach called food metabolomics, or "Foodomics", which uses a sophisticated biochemical technique, called mass spectrometry, to identify and measure the abundance of many different molecules present in a food. Assessing three U.S. rice varieties that were previously used in human dietary intervention trials, the researchers found 453 metabolites, including 65 that had been shown to have potential medicinal and health promoting attributes and 16 that had not been reported for rice bran before.
Professor Ryan said: "We investigated the amino acids, vitamins, cofactors and secondary metabolites that can be found in rice bran, as we suspected that they contribute to its medicinal and nutritional benefits. We were surprised to find that cofactors, vitamins and amino acids make up almost 50% of the total small molecule content."
A literature search conducted by the authors showed that some of the compounds they identified in rice bran had been shown in previous studies to have anti-inflammatory, anti-microbial and anti-hypertensive properties, among others. Rice bran also has a protein content of 12-15% that deserves attention as it could help tackle nutrition shortages that are a major global health concern.
Professor Ryan said: "Rice is an essential staple food for more than half of the world's population. It is grown in more than 100 countries. Rice bran as a food ingredient could deliver more than 400 individual compounds when consumed and it is likely that many of them function in a teamwork manner to deliver health benefits."
She added: "Although only limited information was available on how well individual compounds will be usable by the human body after ingestion, the biochemical composition of rice bran merits further investigation for nutritional therapies and medical food applications."

More information: Iman Zarei et al, Rice Bran Metabolome Contains Amino Acids, Vitamins & Cofactors, and Phytochemicals with Medicinal and Nutritional Properties, Rice (2017). DOI: 10.1186/s12284-017-0157-2
WWF-Pakistan and SNGPL sign MoU to provide cheap, green fuel source
ISLAMABAD – World Wide Fund for Nature-Pakistan (WWF-Pakistan) and Sui Northern Gas Pipelines Limited (SNGPL) signed a MoU to provide alternate means of energy to rural communities in cotton and rice producing areas of the country.
The formal agreement was signed by Hammad Naqi Khan, Director General WWF-Pakistan, and Amjad Latif, Chief Executive/ Managing Director, SNGPL at a ceremony held at SNGPL head office on Friday. The MoU forges a partnership of a year between the organisations, starting from July 2017 and ending in June 2019.
WWF-Pakistan with the financial support from SNGPL will implement the project titled Agro-waste community enterprise for the provision of alternate energy for households and small businesses (AWARE) which will provide clean-burning cooking stoves fuelled by agro-waste as an alternate means of energy to rural communities.
The project will promote eco-friendly, alternative energy sources among rural households and small businesses through training, awareness raising and dissemination of 525 gasifiers units using agro-waste as fuel; a low-cost, simple, user friendly yet clean source of energy for cooking with great potential for wider dissemination among rural communities where different agro-wastes are available in abundant form.
Hammad Naqi Khan, while welcoming the opportunity of teaming up with SNGPL said, “With this partnership we have an opportunity to promote renewable energy technologies, particularly harnessing the true potential of agro-waste in order to ensure that the rural and less privileged areas of the country keep pace with the growing energy demands in a sustainable manner.
This project will not only improve rural livelihoods by ensuring access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and clean energy but will also help in promoting environmental stewardship and encouraging climate change mitigation.”
Speaking on the occasion, Amjad Latif, said, “We as an organisation are committed to the conservation and protection of the environment, to achieve this purpose we have worked with WWF-Pakistan in the past and will continue to work with the organisation in future. Recognising the measures being taken by WWF-Pakistan in tackling the catastrophic impacts of climate change, together we will promote activities to protect and preserve the environment—conservation is at the heart of SNGPL Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) policy.”
Agricultural waste such as rice husk, cotton gin waste, and bagasse have the potential to generate energy, which otherwise becomes a problem for disposal. In the context of rural communities, which do not have access to energy, agro-wastes can be used as an energy source to reduce the dependence of households on fuelwood and meet their energy needs.
The use of agro-waste is an efficient fuel source compared to conventional methods, which burns rapidly and emits excessive smoke and particles causing indoor pollution and respiratory diseases. There is potential to replicate the use of agro-waste as alternate energy in both cotton and rice growing areas of Pakistan due to the availability of agro-waste from each crop. Replication potential exists in south Punjab and central Punjab, where cotton and rice processing mills are in abundance.-PR

Philippines’ 300 heirloom rice varieties and their Hong Kong fans eager to serve them to diners

Biodynamic and organic rice varieties are more expensive than the polished grains most of us eat, but their intense flavours and chewy textures are increasingly drawing chefs and consumers in the Philippines and overseas
PUBLISHED : Friday, 02 June, 2017, 7:45am
UPDATED : Friday, 02 June, 2017, 7:45am
“The grains are not polished, so they have a chewy texture and more intense flavour, very nutty,” he says of the black, brown and red Philippine rice he’s tasted. Fellow chef Margaret Xu had given him samples to try and now Lau is keen to add them to the “rice menu”, or to use them as stuffing for some traditional dishes.
“The rice I’ve tried is biodynamic and while it is more expensive, I think it’s part of the diners’ education to understand the true cost of food,” he says.
Lau’s desire to use Philippine rice in Hong Kong is good news for Bernadette Romulo Puyat. She is undersecretary of the Philippine Department of Agriculture and regularly visits farmers to promote best practice in rice growing and cultivation.
She also collects rice seeds to distribute in the aftermath of typhoons, and helps collect samples of heirloom varieties for the International Rice Research Institute, which has its headquarters in the Philippines.
“We have over 300 varieties of heirloom rice that are indigenous to the Philippines,” she says during Madrid Fusion Manila, an annual food trade show that was held in April. “The heirloom rice is organic and takes about nine months to grow on rice terraces.”
While rice is the number one crop grown in the Philippines, Puyat says the output only covers 90 per cent of the country’s consumption, with the remainder imported from Thailand and Vietnam.

Rice is served with every meal, and carbohydrate alternatives, including noodles, aren’t considered even a close substitute. Many Philippine dishes are strongly flavoured with ingredients such as soy sauce, fish sauce and vinegar, and these sauces are best soaked up by rice.
Puyat cites 2015 government consumption figures of 112.26kg of rice per capita – more than 2.6 times the amount consumed in Hong Kong, at 43kg in 2015 and 2016.
Heirloom rice makes up less than five per cent of total rice production in the Philippines, primarily because its price deters consumers and also because growing it is labour intensive.
“Only in the past few years has there been an interest in heirloom and organic rice,” Puyat says. “But if we don’t eat it, heirloom rice will disappear.”
Madrid Fusion Manila, now in its third year, showcases Philippine ingredients for local and international chefs.
“In the first year, we showed foreign chefs that we have good quality food. At first local chefs weren’t interested in local ingredients, but then they realised that they are good quality and now they want to meet the farmers,” Puyat says. Consumer interest is spurring farmers to continue growing and harvesting this kind of rice.

The Agriculture Department stall displays more than 40 small glass jars of different kinds of rice, in various shades of beige, red, brown and black.
There’s lantiko, grown in a mountainous area and described as a red short grain, kabal from Benguet that looks like brown whole flaxseed, the black-grained ominio from the mountains, and innawi from Ifugao, a corn-coloured short grain rice.
To promote locally grown varieties, Puyat gives samples to chefs to taste and experiment with, hoping they will place big orders.

Chefs such as Margarita Fores, named Asia’s Best Female Chef in 2016 by Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants, is grateful to the agriculture official for raising awareness of indigenous rice among local chefs. “It helps create a market for farmers and encourages the younger generation to choose farming,” she says.
Fores, chef and owner of such restaurants as Grace Park, Cibo and Café Bola, says she uses black rice in her cooking, and says it is much healthier than polished rice.
 “It has an earthy, nutty flavour and it can be used in modern ways to make it crispy, a puff, wafer, crackers, and you can ferment it to make the flavours more complex,” she says.
She recently cooked for a special dinner for Christie’s clients in New York, where she used black rice that she made into a cracker topped with kinilaw, a Philippine indigenous dish similar to ceviche.
Another young chef experimenting with rice is Jordy Navarra of Toyo Eatery, who uses local ingredients to cook traditional Philippine dishes in creative ways. One is called lugaw, a traditional congee dish usually served for breakfast that’s on a tasting menu at his restaurant. Navarra uses short-grain rice that he flavours with crab roe and burnt kalabaza, or squash, and dresses with coconut vinegar.
 “Before, rice production was more about quantity than quality,” says the 31-year-old, who did a year-long stint at Alvin Leung’s three-Michelin-star Bo Innovation in Hong Kong. “But in the past five years, the quality of the rice has improved a lot.”
At trendy restaurant Hey Handsome, chef Nicco Santos also says if it weren’t for Puyat, he wouldn’t be as interested in local rice.
“It was eye-opening because I never thought there were so many varieties of rice in the Philippines. It’s way too many. I try to taste as many as I can,” the 32-year-old says. “Heirloom rice can be more expensive, but it’s more rewarding because you know how it’s grown and where it’s from.”

Bangladesh firm to get hybrid rice seed from Philippine company
A Bangladeshi firm will introduce soon hybrid rice which could withstand both dry and wet climate.
Philippine-based rice research company SL Agritech Corp. Wednesday signed a collaboration agreement with Bangladesh firm EnP Solutions Ltd. for the seed production of the SL-18H variety of hybrid rice.

Under the agreement, SL Agritech will sell 20 to 50 tons of SL-18H hybrid rice seedlings to EnP Solutions annually.
This will cover 5 to 10 hectares of rice fields, according to a report by"We are going to start around 5 to 10 hectares, but definitely after three years, this will go up to 200 (or) 300 tons per hectares," said Henry Lim, president of SL Agritech Corp.With 163-million population and decreasing scope of arable land, the rice hybrid is expected to increase Bangladesh's rice production.
"Every year, we are losing our arable land to the demographic pressure in terms of navigation, schooling, housing, infrastructure. So, for Bangladesh, we don't have alternative other than hybrid production," said Syed Mahmudul Hug, president of EnP Solutions.

Arkansas flooding toll may not be as bad as expected

Cooler temperatures have helped keep rice losses to flooding at lower levels.
Forrest Laws | Jun 01, 2017
The Arkansas rice crop took a major lick in late April and early May, but it’s beginning to look like the flooding that occurred in the northeast portion of the state may not have claimed as many acres as once feared.
When the remaining floodwaters disperse and replanting is completed, Arkansas growers could still have more than 1 million acres of rice, according to Jarrod Hardke, rice Extension agronomist with the Rice Research and Extension Center in Stuttgart.“I do think at this time we will have over 1 million acres of rice total in the state of Arkansas,” said Dr. Hardke, who was a speaker along with Dr. Nathan Childs, a USDA-ERS agricultural economist, during the University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture Rice Webinar on May 25.
Initially, Dr. Hardke and other rice specialists with the university had estimated the state’s losses at 180,000 acres or more of rice to the floodwaters that began moving out of Missouri and into north-central Arkansas in late April.
“The floodwaters, even as of today more than three weeks later, have not come anywhere near subsiding,” he said. “But I will say that we have been pleasantly surprised at some of the rice fields we are going to be able to keep.”
Below 1 million?
At one point, rice specialists had said the state could drop below 1 million acres, which would have been the first time acreage had fallen below that mark since 1983. That was based, in part, on USDA’s March 31 Planting Intentions Report estimate of 1.1 million acres of rice for the state in 2017.
“There has already been some replanting of those areas that were lost,” Dr. Hardke said. “Some others are certainly still up in the air and obviously a lot of the area that still remains flooded is a huge question mark.”
In 2013, primarily due to high soybean and corn prices, Arkansas rice plantings fell to 1.07 million acres, he said. “That was the lowest since the late 1980s, and, if we fall below that level, that will be the lowest since 1987.”
He said long-grain varieties will account for most of the decline with medium-grain acres remaining in line with USDA’s projections.
“Arkansas was already projected to be down a good 20 percent compared to 2016, and it’s looking like we could even push down even further below that to a 25 percent reduction or more,” said Dr. Hardke.
90 percent planted
“To provide a little bit of perspective on flooding events and what has occurred and expected yields to come out of that, if you compare it to the flooding of 2011, which this is very reminiscent of – that flood event occurred on almost the exact same date of the year – we only had about 45 percent of the crop planted versus 90 percent this year. 
He said growers have lost a tremendous number of levees in their fields. “We do seed those, and there will be lost production associated with that with many electing to not reseed levies. Those that have are moving to earlier maturing that are less productive to account for the maturity difference and to get whatever rice they can off of that crop.”
In 2011, when the flooding occurred, Arkansas growers were projected to plant about 1.4 million acres of rice. Although rice specialists thought they would lose 300,000 acres, the final number was 200,000, giving the state 1.2 million acres that year.
“Hopefully, we'll keep more than we thought in 2017, but we’ll have to battle around that,” he said. “So at the moment we’re still juggling all of those numbers and where we're going to settle out from there.”
Missouri’s rice acreage was also reduced, but figures aren’t available yet. “Mississippi did drop their acres tremendously so some of that seed came available to be moved over into Arkansas to help bolster some of the seed limitations that had been there,” he said. “Mississippi could be down to 120,000 to 130,000 acres.
Rice at mid-season
“And Louisiana was also having a very, very good start to the year. They subsequently experienced flooding. But the timing of their flooding could potentially be even worse and more devastating because their rice was mid-season where it is much more susceptible to the loss and plant death when you have submerged rice under those conditions.”
Growers with flooded fields may have benefitted from the cooler temperatures that have occurred during May. “That’s one of the reasons a lot of the rice has probably survived a little bit longer under those submerged conditions,” he said.
“While that has been effective in helping the submerged rice, it’s also been to the detriment of the rice that’s not submerged. A lot of it has struggled mightily with the cool conditions and herbicide injury. Luckily, drift complaints have not caused too many problems, but the rice needs what's expected after this rain – temperatures in the mid and upper 80s and nights that are not too cool. Hopefully, we'll grow out of this.

U.S. Rice on the Menu in Japan 
By Sarah Moran
 TOKYO, JAPAN -- Earlier this week, USA Rice conducted a one-on-one taste-testing presentation for Cowboy Kazoku (Cowboy Family) of Royal Holdings Company, one of the major foodservice companies operating family restaurants and fast food chains in Japan. 
After tasting 10 menu items prepared using U.S. medium grain rice, Royal Holdings was persuaded to use U.S. medium grain at Cowboy Family, their family style restaurant where staff members wear bandanas and cowboy hats, and the restaurant is staged to make customers feel as if they were invited to a party at a rancher's home. 
"We first made contact with Royal Holdings at FABEX in April where USA Rice hosted a preview taste-testing session for them," said Jim Guinn, director of USA Rice Asia Promotion Programs.  "The Cowboy Family chain has 36 restaurants and, as a major buyer of U.S. products including rice and beef is a close partner of the Agricultural Trade Office in the U.S. Embassy here."
During June, another Japanese foodservice chain called Origin Dining, a "fast, casual" restaurant, will be offering a Thai chicken and rice dish, "Khao Man Kai," prepared with U.S. Calrose rice.  According to a recent press release, Origin Dining said they chose to use Calrose because it is better suited for this type of dish.
"Interest continues to grow in both foodservice and retail sectors in Japan for U.S. rice due to a number of factors, including versatility and price," said Guinn.  "It seems Japan's domestic rice policy which incentivizes production of super premium table rice and rice for livestock feed is pushing the country's foodservice industry to look to imports for their needs.

"Arrós passat, per el gat. (Overcooked rice is for the cat.)"
                                                                                   - Matt Goulding

Bottlenecks in rice production chain affecting market share
VietNamNet Bridge - Vietnam’s rice production is meeting difficulties because of two bottlenecks at the ends of the production chain, leading to a decline in market share. 

According to IPSARD, the first bottleneck is related to supply. Two-thirds of the rice surplus is in the hands of 20 percent of the biggest farmers – producers with an average cultivated area of 2.74 hectares.

Of 9 million households that grow rice, rice productivity from the biggest 300,000 households accounts for the large proportion of rice exports.

The ‘bulge’ in the rice value chain is processing. While rice cultivation depends on a number of large households, the processing is carried out at over 300,000 factories, most of which are small scale. 
Vietnam’s rice production is meeting difficulties because of two bottlenecks at the ends of the production chain, leading to a decline in market share. 
There are only 1,000 processing factories in Thailand.

The second bottleneck lies at the end of the chain – exports. There are only about 100 exporters, and only 22 exporters have licenses to export rice to China.

A report of the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD) shows that Vietnam’s rice exports in 2016 decreased by 27 percent in quantity and 23 percent in value compared to 2015, the lowest 8-year level.

The rice exports to China, Vietnam’s largest export market, have also decreased. The exports to choosy markets, including the EU, the Middle East and Sub-Sahara, account for only a few percent of total exports.

Rice demand to recover?

According to Sergio Araujo from FAO Rome, the challenges for Vietnam are that it needs to shift from low-cost to high-end rice and to distinguish between Vietnam’s rice and rice from other countries.In fact, the competition in the high-end rice market segment is very stiff. Thailand has increased its high-end rice standards and set up a research institute for added value in the rice sector. India is focusing on improving technical standards for basmati rice and making efforts to increase the production of organic rice.

The demand for rice is on the decrease as people want products richer in protein such as meat, seafood, eggs and milk.  Meanwhile, according to Pham Kim Dung from IPSARD, Vietnam’s loyal markets are now applying necessary measures to ensure food security.

However, according to WB and IMF, the rice price still is moving up in the short term because of increased demand for storing rice. Malaysia has decided to increase the import volume to 950,000 tons. Bangladesh has announced it would import 600,000 tons, considering supply from Vietnam.

Ministers assure rice prices to go down soon

Sun Online Desk     2nd June, 2017 09:28:06

The government’s ministers on Friday assured that the soaring prices of rice will be tamed very soon as the government have taken various steps in this regard.Responding a volley of questions from journalists about the hike in the rice prices government’s four influential ministers came up with the assurance, UNB reports.The ministers were answering to the reporters’ questions at the Finance Minister’s post-budget press meet in the capital's Osmani Memorial Auditorium.

Finance Minister AMA Muhith, Agriculture Minister Matia Chowdhury, Industries Minister Amir Hossain Amu and Planning Minister AHM Mustafa Kamal came up with the assurance.They attributed the hike in the rice prices to the damage of corps in the haor regions by flashflood.

The Industries Minister, however, found lack of patriotism and traders’ evil intention to make hefty profits taking advantage of any bad situation the main reason for ‘unnecessarily’ rise in the rice price.

On Thursday, Finance Minister AMA Muhith proposed the biggest-ever national budget of Tk 400,266 crore for fiscal year 2017-18, saying he was placing the budget at a ‘historic juncture’ of economic development.

“The rice prices have gone up following the devastating flashflood that hit the country’s seven haor districts. I believe it’ll come down soon,” said Muhith.He said the government has sufficient stockpile of rice to meet the market demand.
“We’re increasing our stock further, and hope we’ll be able to influence the market to reduce the rice price.”

Matia Chowdhury said, “No one can deny that the rice prices have shot up as two-thirds crops in the haor region were damaged by natural calamity. Besides, a fungal disease known as Blast affected Boro production,” she said.

She said the Food Ministry has already signed a deal with Vietnam and floated a tender to import rice under the government-to-government arrangement to keep the rice market stable.

Besides, she said, the government has given focus on boosting the Aush production. “There’ll be no rice crisis.” Matia said they have been providing flood-affected haor people with food support through VGF and OMS, and will continue it until the harvest of new crops.
 Amu said though there is no crisis of rice in the market, a group of traders is unnecessarily hiking its price. “I think some businessmen in our country have instinct to increase the prices of essentials whenever they get any scope. They’ve now increased the rice prices without any reason.”
 Referring to a media report that traders in Saudi Arabia and some other Muslim countries do business in 11 months and serve people during Ramadan, he said, “It’s completely reverse here. Our businessmen have a tendency to raise prices of essentials during Ramadan.”

To address the problem, Amu said, the government is enacting various laws as people here lack patriotism.

He urged the media to play an effective role in discouraging unscrupulous traders to increase the prices of essentials by creating artificial crisis.

The Planning Minister said the hike in the rice prices is a temporary problem caused by the natural disaster. “Our Prime Minister is working sincerely to resolve it. She is in business asking all concerned to make the market stable. We hope we’ll be able to control the prices of rice and other essentials very soon.

Recent rains concern rice growers

Bruce Schultz, LSU AgCenter 12:41 p.m. CT June 2, 2017
MAMOU — Continual rainfall in the past few days has farmers worried about disease problems in their rice crop, an LSU AgCenter plant pathologist said at rice field days held in Jefferson Davis and Evangeline parishes.“In the last week and a half, I’ve probably had 20 to 30 disease calls,” said LSU AgCenter plant pathologist Don Groth, speaking at the Evangeline Parish rice field day on June 1.
Groth also spoke about those concerns at the field day held the previous day in Fenton.
Groth urged farmers to scout their fields and to use fungicides on time, usually at the boot stage with 2- to 4-inch panicles in the head. But a treatment for blast disease should be applied at heading.
“Once an epidemic gets going, it takes a lot more to stop it than if you catch it in the beginning,” he said.
Sheath blight is showing up in some fields, but occurrence is erratic. Fields where soybeans are planted in rotation with rice are more likely to have the disease than rice fields following crawfish, Groth said.
Blast disease has not been a problem so far.“If you see it, make sure everything is flooded,” he said.Fungicide applications should be avoided immediately after or before a rain, he added.
AgCenter rice breeder Adam Famoso said a new genetics lab funded by the Louisiana Rice Research Board is providing new benefits with improvements in the foundation seed program. Varieties grown for seed at the AgCenter H. Rouse Caffey Rice Research Station can be screened to minimize off-types.

AgCenter rice breeder Steve Linscombe said last year’s flooding resulted in some rice seed with low vigor. Some of the plots at one of the field day locations were seeded with low-vigor seed, and those plots were more adversely affected by recent heavy rainfalls.
A Clearfield Jazzman line under development will have improved yield from previous versions of Jazzman. “I think this market will slowly continue to expand,” he said.
AgCenter rice specialist Dustin Harrell said the rice crop got off to a good start this year with a warm winter and spring that allowed early planting.
This year’s crop of 400,000 acres in Louisiana is about 8 percent lower than last year.
“Everything was looking good until late April when we got significant rainfall,” he said.
About 4,000 acres of rice were lost in Louisiana because of floods, but rice acreage in Missouri and Arkansas had more significant losses, with more than 150,000 acres ruined in Arkansas.
Harrell said a new product to prevent nitrogen fertilizer losses will be available in 2018.
AgCenter entomologist Blake Wilson said a high percentage the for Louisiana rice acreage was treated with Dermacor, suggesting that heavy dependence on the product could lead to resistance problems.
No insecticides can be used in fields where crawfish are raised, but farmers can reduce stinkbugs by keeping levees and ditches mowed, he said.
The rice leaf miner is showing up this year, he said, but it poses little threat to yield.
AgCenter weed scientist Eric Webster said the herbicide benzobicyclon could be available in Louisiana next year as Rogue. The product is good for controlling aquatic weeds, but it does not have the broad spectrum weed control of another new product, Loyant, he said.
AgCenter plant pathologist Boyd Padgett said this year’s soybean crop looks good so far. “I’m impressed with the crop overall,” he said.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture estimates that 94 percent of the Louisiana soybean crop is planted, and 14 percent is blooming.
Farmers are concerned about how long soybeans can survive flooded conditions, Padgett said. Research indicates soybeans can survive 48 to 96 hours of flooding, but it depends on growth stage, temperature after drainage and water clarity.
AgCenter plant pathologist Trey Price said the soybean disease called taproot decline is caused by a fungus. LSU graduate students have several studies underway on the problem.
Taproot decline is unlikely in south Louisiana because the disease is found in fields where soybeans are planted in consecutive years, he said.
Work is ongoing to find a solution to Cercospora that is resistant to fungicides. “I think resistant varieties will be our ultimate solution to resistant Cercospora blight,” Price said.

NFA rice stocks in Davao Region in critical levels
Friday, June 02, 2017 SunStar file photo. SunStar file photo. NATIONAL Food Authority (NFA) rice buffer stock in Davao Region is on its critical stage and additional bags from Cebu, Iloilo, and Bacolod are expected to arrive in the coming months to augment the region’s rice supply, an official said. Currently, Davao Region has around 102,000 bags in their storage facility.  According to NFA Davao Regional Director Dianne Silva, depending on the population’s daily consumption requirement, this amount would only be good for three days if the region is solely dependent on NFA rice. But since most of the consumers opt for commercial rice, Silva said the amount will probably last for 20 more days.
“We are on our critical stage (of our NFA rice stocks) but we are thankful that we still have commercial rice being sold. But even though this is our state now, we are asking for augmentation stocks from regional offices in the country that still have stocks to spare,” said Silva. She said last May 31, a vessel from NFA Iloilo containing 33,000 bags of NFA rice arrived in Davao City. A number of these are already included in the 102,000 bags rice stock record. Only last Thursday, June 1, was the unloading completed and Silva said they hope to already finish and finalize the record of the total rice bags stored for Davao Region. “We asked help from Iloilo and they promised around 100,000 bags to be given to our region.
The 33,000 bags have already arrived. We received information today that they are again loading from Bacolod towards here. The second vessel, which will carry around 30,000 bags, is hopefully to arrive on the third week of June,” Silva said adding NFA Cebu also promised to assist with 100,000 bags. Silva said, although the region has rice producers, NFA could not necessarily just buy from the farmers and convert it into NFA rice since the farmers sell them at P22 to P24 per kilo. When these are sold into commercial rice, the prices double to P44 to 48 per kilo due to milling and other processes involved, explaining the current commercial rice prices. She then explained that the purchase for NFA rice, which is sold in retail for P25, is different. With the NFA rice price expected to be lower than commercial prices, Silva said the suggestion to just purchase rice from local farmers would mean either NFA would increase the price of their NFA rice or the farmers would lower their selling price. Both of which, according to Silva, would affect the farmers and consumers negatively as price for NFA rice increasing will also definitely cause commercial rice to increase as well.
No change in duty on rice import despite domestic price surge
FE Report
Published : 02 Jun 2017, 02:02:41
The government has kept the customs duty (CD) on rice import unchanged despite a surge in the prices of the staple food in the domestic market.The FY18 budget has proposed to keep the CD unbothered to ensure fair prices of farm produces.The food minister last month assured that the import duty on rice would be relaxed for the private sector, which has not been reflected in the budget.
The CD on rice import remained static at 25 per cent at a time when prices of the staple, especially that of coarse variety, was showing an all-time high in the domestic market.The current rate of coarse rice is also one of the highest in the globe, according to the food ministry.       
Prices of coarse rice have surged by 42-43 per cent in Dhaka and 69-70 per cent in rural areas in last six months, the Trading Corporation of Bangladesh (TCB) and Department of Agricultural Marketing (DAM) data showed.Coarse variety Swarna was selling at Tk 46-Tk 48 a kg in Dhaka.
Medium quality Brridhan-28 were trading at Tk 50-Tk 52 a kg and finer quality Miniket and Najirshail Tk 55-Tk 62 a kg in the city - 18 per cent hike in last six months.Agriculture economist Prof Gazi M Jalil said poor people in Bangladesh were consuming coarse rice at all-time high price. 
He said the government's intention was good for the farmers but it should also consider the interest of the 50 million ultra poor.He said the production of rice will decline this FY considering the devastating flood in haor region and occurrence of rice blast in a vast area.

"Import duty on off-season coarse varieties like Swarna should be reviewed immediately till Aman harvest, which will not affect farmers but would benefit the consumers," he said.         The government rice stock reached a record low of only 0.213 million tonnes on Wednesday.
However, the food ministry is now on a move to bring 0.9 million tonnes of rice from the global sources.   The country has targeted to produce 34.98 million tonnes of rice in the outgoing fiscal year which would be tough to achieve amid the flash flood and outbreak of rice blast, said experts.

Concerns over rice stockpile release by Thailand

PHNOM  PENH, BANGKOK (Khmer Times/Bangkok Post) – Cambodian rice millers and exporters are strongly concerned that Thailand’s plan to release 4.32 million tonnes of state rice stocks by September, driven by a sharp surge in global rice demand, could depress prices of the vital grain on commodity markets.

“When Thailand sells such a large part of its stockpile on the open market it will have a knock-on effect on prices and in turn also affect the price of Cambodian milled rice exports,” Hun Lak, vice president of the Cambodia Rice Federation, told Khmer Times.

Mr Lak said that Cambodia, unlike Thailand, lacked large warehouses to store rice paddy and release the grain when market prices were high.“The longest time we can keep our stocks is three to four months and after that it gets spoilt,” he added.
Thailand is the world’s second-biggest rice exporter after India and still has stocks of about 5 million tonnes left over from a rice-buying scheme under the previous government that paid farmers well above market rates.

The current military government has been trying to sell off stockpiles from the scheme through several state auctions since it took power in 2014.
It has so far sold 12.74 million tonnes, worth 114 billion baht ($3.31 billion), the Thai Commerce Ministry said on Wednesday. It said it will be able to offload the remaining rice by the end of the year.Bangladesh wants to buy around 250,000 to 300,000 tonnes of 5-percent white rice immediately for humanitarian relief efforts in the wake of Cyclone Mora that has inundated most of the country. It plans to increase rice imports to 500,000 tonnes by the end of the year and is looking at Thailand and Vietnam to meet its emergency needs.

Rice demand is similarly expected to go up in the humanitarian response in Sri Lanka, which is also reeling from the aftermath of Cyclone Mora that triggered floods and landslides.
Song Saran, CEO of Amru Rice (Cambodia), said Thailand could afford to sell its rice stockpile when prices were high because rice farmers were given subsidies by the government to cover their production costs.

“Production costs in Cambodia are high because we are growing good quality rice,” Mr Saran said.Because of this, he said, Cambodia’s rice exports find it hard to compete in the commodities market.But not all of Thailand’s 4.32 million tonnes of state rice stocks are of good quality. About 2.5 million tonnes are mostly low-quality and decaying rice fit only for industrial use.

Chookiat Ophaswongse, honorary president of the Thai Rice Exporters Association, said Thailand’s good-quality rice stocks in the state stockpile are about to be depleted.
Because of this, Amru Rice’s Mr Saran is urging the Cambodia Rice Federation to find more markets for kingdom’s high quality jasmine rice exports.
“Since our production costs are high and we should consider finding other markets which Thailand does not reach so that we can maintain our rice quality and get premium prices for it,” he added. 

Cambodia’s milled rice exports were close to 170,000 tonnes in the first three months of this year, an increase of three percent over the same period last year, official figures showed. The rise came after exports in March fell by 16 percent and exports in January and February rose 10 percent and 17 percent respectively.

China is the biggest single-country market for Cambodia’s milled rice, and imported about 67,000 tonnes in the three months. France and Poland ranked second and third in Cambodia’s milled rice markets, importing 21,000 and 12,000 tonnes respectively

Nagpur Foodgrain Prices Open- JUN 02, 2017

Reuters | Jun 2, 2017, 01.25 PM IST
Nagpur Foodgrain Prices - APMC/Open Market-June 2 Nagpur, June 2 (Reuters) - Gram prices moved down in Nagpur Agriculture Produce and Marketing Committee (APMC) auction on lack of demand from local millers. Easy condition in Madhya Pradesh pulses and release of stock from stockists also affected prices. Farmers organisations strike in all over Maharashtra has started showing its effects on arrival here. Only 1,050 bags of gram and 1,200 bags of tuar were available for auctions, according to sources. FOODGRAINS & PULSES GRAM * Desi gram showed upward tendency in open market on good seasonal demand from local traders amid tight supply from producing region. TUAR * Tuar gavarani moved down in open market on poor demand from local traders amid release of stock from stockists. * Moong Chamki firmed up in open market on increased buying support from local traders amid thin arrival from producing belts. * In Akola, Tuar New - 3,800-3,900, Tuar dal (clean) - 5,800-6,000, Udid Mogar (clean) - 9,200-10,000, Moong Mogar (clean) 6,800-7,200, Gram - 5,800-6,100, Gram Super best - 7,800-8,200 * Wheat, rice and other commodities moved in a narrow range in scattered deals and settled at last levels in thin trading activity. Nagpur foodgrains APMCauction/open-market prices in rupees for 100 kg FOODGRAINS Available prices Previous close Gram Auction 4,500-5,125 4,600-5,125 Gram Pink Auction n.a. 2,100-2,600 Tuar Auction 3,350-3,700 3,400-3,800 Moong Auction n.a. 3,900-4,200 Udid Auction n.a. 4,300-4,500 Masoor Auction n.a. 2,600-2,800 Wheat Mill quality Auction 1,500-1,628 1,500-1,628 Gram Super Best Bold 8,000-8,400 8,000-8,400 Gram Super Best n.a. n.a. Gram Medium Best 7,400-7,800 7,400-7,800 Gram Dal Medium n.a. n.a Gram Mill Quality 5,400-5,600 5,400-5,600 Desi gram Raw 6,400-6,600 6,350-6,550 Gram Yellow 7,900-8,100 7,900-8,100 Gram Kabuli 12,300-13,400 12,300-13,400 Tuar Fataka Best-New 6,000-6,200 6,000-6,200 Tuar Fataka Medium-New 5,500-5,800 5,500-5,800 Tuar Dal Best Phod-New 5,300-5,500 5,300-5,500 Tuar Dal Medium phod-New 4,800-5,200 4,800-5,200 Tuar Gavarani New 3,800-3,900 3,900-4,000 Tuar Karnataka 4,000-4,150 4,000-4,150 Masoor dal best 5,400-5,600 5,400-5,600 Masoor dal medium 5,100-5,300 5,100-5,300 Masoor n.a. n.a. Moong Mogar bold (New) 7,000-7,500 7,000-7,500 Moong Mogar Medium 6,500-6,800 6,500-6,800 Moong dal Chilka 5,400-6,500 5,400-6,500 Moong Mill quality n.a. n.a. Moong Chamki best 7,000-8,000 6,900-7,900 Udid Mogar best (100 INR/KG) (New) 9,500-10,500 9,500-10,500 Udid Mogar Medium (100 INR/KG) 8,000-9,000 8,000-9,000 Udid Dal Black (100 INR/KG) 5,800-6,000 5,800-6,000 Batri dal (100 INR/KG) 5,200-5,600 5,200-5,600 Lakhodi dal (100 INR/kg) 3,100-3,300 3,100-3,300 Watana Dal (100 INR/KG) 2,900-3,000 2,900-3,000 Watana White (100 INR/KG) 3,400-3,600 3,400-3,600 Watana Green Best (100 INR/KG) 4,000-4,500 4,000-4,500 Wheat 308 (100 INR/KG) 1,950-2,050 1,950-2,050 Wheat Mill quality (100 INR/KG) 1,700-1,800 1,700-1,800 Wheat Filter (100 INR/KG) 2,150-2,350 2,150-2,350 Wheat Lokwan new (100 INR/KG) 1,850-2,050 1,850-2,050 Wheat Lokwan best (100 INR/KG) 2,200-2,350 2,200-2,350 Wheat Lokwan medium (100 INR/KG) 1,900-2,050 1,900-2,050 Lokwan Hath Binar (100 INR/KG) n.a. n.a. MP Sharbati Best (100 INR/KG) 3,100-3,500 3,100-3,500 MP Sharbati Medium (100 INR/KG) 2,300-2,800 2,300-2,800 Rice BPT new (100 INR/KG) 2,800-3,200 2,800-3,200 Rice BPT best (100 INR/KG) 3,800-4,200 3,800-4,200 Rice BPT medium (100 INR/KG) 3,200-3,400 3,200-3,400 Rice Luchai (100 INR/KG) 2,500-2,800 2,500-2,800 Rice Swarna new (100 INR/KG) 2,300-2,500 2,300-2,500 Rice Swarna best (100 INR/KG) 2,600-2,800 2,600-2,800 Rice Swarna medium (100 INR/KG) 2,400-2,500 2,400-2,500 Rice HMT New (100 INR/KG) 3,600-3,900 3,600-3,900 Rice HMT best (100 INR/KG) 4,500-5,000 4,500-5,000 Rice HMT medium (100 INR/KG) 4,100-4,300 4,100-4,300 Rice Shriram New(100 INR/KG) 4,600-5,000 4,600-5,000 Rice Shriram best 100 INR/KG) 6,500-7,000 6,500-7,000 Rice Shriram med (100 INR/KG) 5,800-6,200 5,800-6,200 Rice Basmati best (100 INR/KG) 11,000-14,000 11,000-14,000 Rice Basmati Medium (100 INR/KG) 6,000-8,000 6,000-8,000 Rice Chinnor New(100 INR/KG) 4,800-5,000 4,600-4,800 Rice Chinnor best 100 INR/KG) 6,000-6,500 5,800-6,300 Rice Chinnor medium (100 INR/KG) 5,500-5,800 5,100-5,300 Jowar Gavarani (100 INR/KG) 1,900-2,200 1,900-2,200 Jowar CH-5 (100 INR/KG) 1,800-1,900 1,800-1,900 WEATHER (NAGPUR) Maximum temp. 40.8 degree Celsius, minimum temp. 28.2 degree Celsius Rainfall : Nil FORECAST: Partly cloudy sky. Maximum and minimum temperature would be around and 41 and 27 degree Celsius respectively. Note: n.a.--not available (For oils, transport costs are excluded from plant delivery prices, but included in market prices.

Vietnam rice export back on track

Vietnam’s rice export growth has regained momentum this year after a year of slowdown, according to a report by the Vietnam Food Association (VFA).Vietnam rice export back on track, vietnam economy, business news, vn news, vietnamnet bridge, english news, Vietnam news, news Vietnam, vietnamnet news, vn news, Vietnam net news, Vietnam latest news, Vietnam breaking news
Stevedores at work at a rice storehouse in the Mekong Delta. Vietnamese rice export has regained growth momentum this year after a year of plunge.
Vietnam exported 2.3 million tons of rice worth US$1 billion in the first five months of the year, up 1.6% in volume and 1.2% in value year-on-year. China remained Vietnam’s largest rice importer, accounting for 47.5% of the nation's total rice exports. More than 815,000 tons of rice costing over US$376 million went to the northern neighbor in January-April, up 16.1% and 16.2% against the same period last year respectively. Vietnam shipped 4.89 million tons of rice valued at US$2.1 billion in all of 2016, a respective decrease of 25.54%  and 20.57% against 2015.
China was still Vietnam’s biggest importer of the food staple last year despite a 19.79% decline. It purchased more than 1.8 million tons of rice from Vietnam last year, 36.97% of Vietnam's total rice shipments. The domestic rice price has improved by VND200-300 a kilo, supported by the recent signing of a memorandum of understanding to export one million of rice a year to Bangladesh until 2022. The South Asian country will import 300,000 tons at first.
 In addition, the National Food Authority (NFA) of the Philippines has announced to buy 250,000 tons of rice from Vietnam in June. Nguyen Thanh Tho, a rice trader at Ba Dac wholesale market in Tien Giang Province, told the Daily that IR 50404 rice is sold at VND4,350-4,400 a kilo, an increase of VND200-300, helped by the Bangladesh rice deal. Besides, IR 50404 material rice is purchased at VND6,350-6,450 a kilo in the Mekong Delta, up VND200. Major importing markets, especially Bangladesh and the Philippines, have helped buoy the price. The Free On Board (FOB) price of 5%-broken white rice from Vietnam is US$370-380 a ton, up US$5-10 compared to a week ago.

Millers reap benefits as paddy sold at low price

By Express News Service  |   Published: 03rd June 2017 02:58 AM  |  
Last Updated: 03rd June 2017 07:40 AM  |   A+A-   |  
Farmers at a mandi in Jeypore | Express
JEYPORE: Unscrupulous rice millers are making a fast buck by buying  paddy from farmers of Koraput district at rates below the Minimum Support Price (MSP). While the official rate is `1,470 per quintal, farmers are being paid `1,000 - `1,200 by these millers.
Sources said due to slow flow of paddy stock in Jeypore mandis, middlemen and millers have managed to get the Primary Agriculture Cooperative Societies (PACS)- listed farmers’ ID numbers and registered their names at the mandis. The millers then purchase the produce from registered farmers at a low price and sell it in the mandis at Government rate. Even the names of those farmers who have not cultivated rabi crops have been registered for procurement by the unscrupulous millers.
Out of 30,000 hectares (ha) of paddy crops cultivated in the district, farmers have harvested only on 5,000 ha. The threshing process is going on slowly due to unfavourable weather. Around 1,000 quintals of paddy are being brought to the mandis by farmers daily while the administration has set the procurement ceiling at 4,000 quintals per day.
The district administration had started paddy procurement from May 26 for the rabi season setting a target of 3.5 lakh quintals from about 10,000 farmers.
Earlier, the farmers had appealed to the administration to open the mandis in the first week of June as harvesting of paddy was delayed, but to no avail. They alleged that the names of farmers and their paddy stocks are being added in the transaction of mandis without physical verification by the  officials concerned. The nexus between procurement officials and rice millers will later lead to distress sale of paddy in the district, the farmers said and demanded strict monitoring of the process by the district level civil supply officials.
Meanwhile, members of Koraput Millers’ Association have urged the farmers not to depend on middlemen and unscrupulous millers.
Contacted, district civil supply authorities said paddy procurement is going on as per the Government norms and the field officials are strictly monitoring the process at each mandi point