Home > Local News > Asian crops boost global rice production

Asian crops boost global rice production

Global rice production may rise to a record in the 2010 season
following improved prospects in China, Cambodia and Thailand, the United
Nations Food & Agriculture Organization, or FAO, said.
Vast rice fields in the Kerobokan district on the resort island of Bali are seen in this file photo. AFP photo
Rough rice production may be 700.7 million metric tons, or 467.3
million tons of milled grain, up about 3 million tons from a November
estimate, the agency said in an e-mailed report. The forecast would be a
3 percent rise from the 2009 season, it said.
The price of rice, the staple food for half the world, may increase
as a rally in the cost of wheat drives consumers to seek alternatives,
Robert Zeigler, director general of the International Rice Research
Institute, said Feb. 11. The forecast for record output depends on
secondary harvests in the northern hemisphere in the next few months
that would bring the 2010 season to a close, according to the FAO.
“Asia is anticipated to account for the bulk of the production
increase despite several climatic setbacks experienced over the season,”
the FAO said. “Larger crops are also forecast to be harvested in
Africa, North America, Europe and Oceania.”
Major buyers return to market
Thai rice prices, the benchmark for Asia, advanced to the highest in
more than a month, according to the Thai Rice Exporters Association on
Feb. 9. The price of 100 percent grade-B white rice increased to $558 a
ton, it said. Rough-rice futures on the Chicago Board of Trade declined
1.7 percent to $15.885 per 100 pounds on Feb. 11.
Countries in Asia were estimated to have purchased 15.4 million tons
of rice in calendar 2010, almost 600,000 tons more than previously
reported and 1.9 million tons more than in 2009, the FAO said.
International trade in calendar 2011 was likely to be 31.4 million
tons, it said, slightly below a year earlier. Thailand’s exports may
rise to 9.7 million tons from 9 million tons in 2010, more than the
official target of 9.5 million tons, partly boosted by prospects for
secondary crops, the FAO said.
International prices would be influenced by the return of major
buyers into the market in the coming months, while the effect of climate
on the secondary crops will need to be monitored after the first
harvest of the season was disappointing in many countries, according to
the report.
“Currency factors and developments in other cereal markets will also
exert an important influence on world rice quotations in the coming
months,” it said.
Daily News
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