Oct 17, 2011

Parboiled rice exports set for 300 percent jump

Paraboiled rice exporters say they are aiming to more than triple exports in coming years, with recent orders from Russia and Bangladesh showing foreign demand for the nutritious staple is strong.

However, they cautioned that exploiting the hunger for parboiled rice abroad will require sufficient supplies of paddy and electricity.

Exporters sent a total of 250 tonnes of parboiled rice to Russia in July, August and September, with orders from Bangladesh rejected because the price was too low, said U Thaung Win, secretary of the Myanmar Rice Millers Association.

He said industry insiders were hoping to boost monthly exports to at least 1000 tonnes by early next year.

“We expect to export 300 tonnes of parboiled rice in October and will increase that amount to more than 1000 tonnes early next year if we have enough paddy to do so,” he said.

U Thaung Win added that millers would also require enough electricity and more efficient mills to meet the target.

“After the next paddy harvest I think we’ll have enough raw material to produce parboiled rice but we need better electricity supplies – we’ve been using our own generator.

“But if we can fulfil these requirements we’ll be able to get closer to meeting international demand,” said U Thaung Win.

A delegation from Bangladesh visited Myanmar earlier this year seeking to find new sources of parboiled rice. Delegates said Bangladesh consumes at least 500,000 tonnes of parboiled rice a year.

However, suppliers here did not accept any orders because the price offered was too low, particularly compared to offers from Russia, which have consistently increased in price.

The first consignment was bought for US$480 a tonne but subsequent shipments in August and September rose by $20 and $70 a tonne respectively.

Source: Myanmar Times


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