The Government stockpiling program of one million tons of winter-spring rice is now complete in the Mekong Delta; however, there is still a lot of rice in stock with prices also showing a slight drop.
|Farmers transporting rice to their home in the Mekong Delta (Photo: SGGP)|
The price of rice has fallen by VND200 a kilogram, compared to early March. A kilogram of normal rice is fetching VND4,900-5,000, long grain rice VND5,100 and Jasmine rice VND5,600-5,800.
Huynh Phu Loc, a trader in Lai Vung District in Dong Thap Province, said that they have stopped buying because businesses have completed stockpiling without further demand due to export difficulty.
Do Minh Nhut, deputy director of the Department of Agriculture and Rural Development in Kien Giang Province, said rice output was more than 2.2 million tons in the winter-spring crop.
After the Government stockpiled one million tons of rice, there is hundreds of thousands of tons in stock now, mainly fragrant Jasmine and high quality varieties.
The provincial authorities have asked seven rice export companies in the province to purchase the inventory for farmers from this month.
The agricultural industry has advised famers to cultivate 60-70 percent of fragrant and high quality rice in the winter-spring crop, but traders and businesses have focused on buying low quality IR 50404 rice variety.
Le Minh Duc, director of the Department of Agriculture and Rural Development in Long An Province, said that there is bad coordination among rice production, consumption and export. Businesses are not interested in ordering farmers to produce as per contracts.
Duong Van Chin, director of the Dinh Thanh Agricultural Research Center in An Giang Province, has proposed to authorized organs to boost large scale rice fields and attract several businesses so that farmers can cultivate as per contracts.
This will help farmers reduce costs and remain secure about demand, while businesses can tightly control the rice origin and quality.
According to the Vietnam Food Association, Vietnam has exported 1.45 million tons of rice worth US$641 million since the beginning of the year and has met with difficulties due to abundant supply of rice from India and Thailand.
The export price is $400-410 a ton of five percent broken rice, $40 lower than that of India and Pakistan. The price is $360-370 a ton of 25 percent broken rice, $30 lower than India.
Because of low export prices, rice price is VND1,000-1,200 lower than in the same period last year in the Mekong Delta.
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