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Daily Global Rice E-Newsletter 2016  www.ricepluss.com www.riceplusmagazine.blogspot.com  For information : Mujahid Ali mujahid.riceplus@gmail.com 0321 369 2874 1 www.ricepluss.com www.riceplusmagazine.blogspot.com Vol 7,Issue IV May 07 ,2016
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"We know that right now expansion into new markets isn't really on the top of everyone's mind," said James Williamson, analyst at Rabobank and author of the report. "However, it is going to be critical for the long-term growth and profitability of premium California medium-grain rice to look to expansion markets even in times of tight supply."
The report goes on to examine the situations surrounding medium- and long-grain rice in the southern states: Many southern medium-grain producers planted more acreage in 2015/16, planning to take advantage of supply gaps from California production. These gaps were limited, leaving many with an unsellable surplus. Faced with lower demand and high supply, Rabobank expects that southern medium grain growers will need to work through their 2016/17 crop as well as their surplus stocks to bring prices to a more profitable level. Southern long-grain acreage is expected to be up 30% from the 2015/16 crops year, with
significant conversion coming from soybean acreage. It is expected that with this large crop,combined with nearly half of the prior year's production still in storage, southern growers will be unable to compete on price alone. This presents the opportunity for producers to concentrate on growing and maintaining the quality of their product to gain premium prices in this space. The report concludes by noting that for export-driven countries such as the United States, changes in production in a competing country or region can help or hurt local industries. The best way, according to the report, to stay in front of this is for producers and processors to do all they can to differentiate themselves by segregating by quality.
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Friday, May 6, 2016 Guardian News
Umahi
Gov donates N1 bn revolving loan to farmers
As part of efforts to make Ebonyi State the number one rice-producing area in Nigeria, the state governor David Umahi, has ordered the disbursement of N1 billion to rice farmers while unveiling several
measures that would fast-track the plan.Umahi, made the disclosure at a special stakeholder‘s forum on rice production in Abakaliki, the state
capital on Wednesday.He also ordered council chairmen, development centre coordinators, management committee members and Liaison officers of the councils, to acquire some hectares of land for rice production.
The governor however, clarified that the money would not be given to them in cash, but as seedlings, fertilizers, and pesticides among other facilities.He said, It is not going to be free; it is going to be loan and when you produce, we will take over the rice and pay you the difference. It is a loan. We borrowed it from the Federal Government, which they will deduct from our
allocation every month. According to him, the state should be able to recover the loan and give it again, so it is going to
be a revolving loan.Under the latest arrangement, council chairmen are to acquire 20 hectares of land each, coordinators 10 hectares, while management committee, as well as Liaison officers, would acquire five hectares each.To ensure an all-encompassing commitment, Umahi tasked political office holders that their survival on their jobs would be predicated on their performance in the task.Board members and heads of parastatals, according to the governor, should also own one farm for agricultural production, adding that the state Executive Council would manage the Ezillo Farms
PM calls for expedited action over rice losses THE NATION May 6, 2016 1:00 am
PRIME MINISTER Prayut Chan-o-cha has instructed the Commerce Ministry to expedite action in seeking Bt20 billion in damages caused by the previous administration‘s allegedly bogus government -to- government rice deals, the government spokesman said.The Comptroller-General's Department recently concluded that six former top officials of the Commerce Ministry, including former commerce minister
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Boonsong Teriyapirom and his deputy Phum Saraphol, were held responsible for Bt20 billion in losses to the state.
This week, the Finance Ministry instructed the Commerce Ministry to obtain an administrative order seeking compensation from Boonsong and the others deemed responsible.The G2G rice deals were part of the Yingluck Shinawatra government's rice-pledging scheme that was
allegedly plagued with corruption and was estimated to cost the state more than Bt500 billion. Government Spokesman Maj-General Sansern Kaewkanerd said yesterday that the premier had instructed the Commerce Ministry to deal with the matter carefully but that it also had to complete the task within a legal time frame."The prime minister would like to tell all bureaucrats that this was an expensive lesson. They should bear in mind that they have to adhere to righteousness, integrity and the law," the spokesman said. "Bureaucrats should not allow themselves to become a tool of politicians."
The four others named by the Comptroller-General's Department as responsible for the Bt20 billion in damages were former ministerial secretary Weerawut Wajanaphukka, former Department of Foreign Trade director-general Manas Soiploy, the department's former rice-trade director Tikhumporn Natvaratat, and the department's former secretary Akharaphong Chuaikliang.
The Supreme Court's Criminal Division for Political Office Holders was told in an ongoing trial that four G2G deals for 6.2 million tonnes of government rice were bogus, as the rice was never exported.A group of farmers is seeking help from the prime minister to expedite the payment of
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funds some local cooperatives owe them for the rice purchased under the last government's rice- pledging scheme.
Sawat Chaisian, a representative of farmers from the provinces of Kamphaeng Phet and Nakhon
Sawan, said yesterday that some 50 members of the group had handed the petition over at thecomplaint office in Government House on Wednesday. They said the cooperatives still owed 83 farmers in the group some Bt16 million
Thai govt to auction 1.2 mn tons of rice
BY EDITOR ON 2016-05-06THAILAND
Govt to auction 1.2 mn tons of rice BANGKOK, 6 May 2016 (NNT) – The Ministry of Commerce is preparing to organize a new
round auction for 1.2 million tons of rice in thegovernment‘s warehouses. Rice traders cansubmit their document for the auction on 17 May and tender bids on 19 May.
Director-General of the Department of Foreign Trade Duangporn Rodphaya said the coming rice auction would be the third time in this year. The amount of rice to be auctioned would be the highest following rising demands in the market for broken-milled rice.
The official added that now was a good time to sell rice from the government‘s wareh ouses since second-season rice had not yet been harvested and some of the rice in the warehouses had been damaged. More damage was expected if the rice was not sold before the rainy season, she said. The department allows those who want to participate in the auction to check rice in the
warehouses from 10 -16 May.http://news.thaivisa.com/thailand/thai-govt-to-auction-1-2-mn-tons-of-rice/140947/
Khmer Times/Sok Chan
Thursday, 05 May 2016
Officials from China will arrive in Cambodia soon to audit and evaluate rice producing companies and to check warehouses.Officials from China‘s General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine (AQSIQ) will soon arrive and carry out auditing and evaluation of registered rice producing companies, rice processors and warehouses, a senior official from the General Department of Agriculture said after a meeting with Cambodia Rice Federation members yesterday. Hean Vanhan, the agriculture deputy director general of the ministry, said the ministry had sent the first registration list of producers and processors of Cambodia rice to be exported to China.
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However, Chinese rice authorities will re-check and re-audit those registered as producers and processors of Cambodian rice before starting imports.On behalf of the government, we always guide all Cambodian rice producers and processors to clean themselves by sticking the phyto- sanitary sign in all places in the warehouse and on rice milling machines, Mr. Vanhan said. It is to make sure that the agriculture ministry awards export contracts to China and we also want them to get business after the Chinese auditing and evaluation.
He said the exact date for the Chinese inspectors to come to Cambodia has not yet been set, but his Chinese counterpart has suggested the Cambodian side send them invitation letters to do the inspection by the middle of this month.In December last year, China asked Cambodia to evaluate its rice exporters to determine whether they adhered to hygiene laws in China, because officials in the world‘s second largest economy did not trust all of the 71 rice exporters registered with the Ministry of Commerce. They sent them the final registration list of rice producers and processors by the end of December last year and they will come to Cambodia to re-check and re- audit.China is strengthening hygiene and food safety standards so they have some conditions for Cambodia to implement for Cambodian rice exporters, Mr. Vanhan said.
They asked the Cambodian government to re-check whether rice exporters are fully complying with their standards.Sok Puthyvuth, the president of the Cambodia Rice Federation (CRF), said he welcomes the Chinese inspectors‘ presence in Cambodia to ensure that Cambodia follows t he standards and conditions set by China and to show China that Cambodia has new processing and
producing companies to build trust with them to purchase rice.Last year, China ordered about 100,000 tons of milled rice from Cambodia and another 100,000 tons this year and we expect to get more orders for the following years after auditing and evaluation, Mr. Puthyvuth said.
While China is strengthening the phyto-sanitary conditions for rice imported from Cambodia, the European Union recently expressed its concerns about milled rice from Cambodia, saying it was not 100 percent fragrant rice from Cambodia.The EU concerns were raised in the 9th EU- Cambodia Joint Committee meeting held in Phnom Penh this week. The EU warned that mixed milled rice from Cambodia to the EU would be an obstacle for Cambodian rice to be sold on the EU market. The EU has called for more serious inspections of fragrant rice exported to the EU market.The Cambodia Rice Federation president said that for weeks the CRF has been working to solve this issue to ensure Cambodian rice adheres to standards. The federation has enlisted international inspectors, the CRF‘s representatives and people from the government to make sure Cambodian rice complies with standards to meet the purchaser demand.
Mr. Vanhan said the warning and announcement from the EU was taken on board and that the private sector must show its willingness and honesty to the customer to maintain the EU market.Song Saran, the CEO of Amru Rice Cambodia, told Khmer Times that if the EU gets good cooperation on the phyto-sanitary conditions from sellers, Cambodia can also ask for DNA testing on its fragrant rice.We are calling for the EU to re -check the milled rice arriving and to scan or assign a third party to check the DNA to make sure that Cambodian rice is 100 percent or mixed, he said.Generally, good quality rice is from 80 to 85 percent in a minimum and if mixed it is about 55 percent. We have to check if there is mixed rice, Mr. Saran said.He added
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that the private sector has already shown honesty, but there is one or two companies which do not comply with the rules.We could not guarantee that all members of the CRF are honest, but we have laws, policies, codes of conduct and seriouslypunish or withdraw export licenses from those who don‘t comply, Mr. Saran said http://www.khmertimeskh.com/news/24664/chinese-to-check-cambodian-rice/
Thai Commerce Ministry to scramble for 20 billion baht damage pay over G-to-G rice scam
BY EDITOR ON 2016-05-06THAILAND
Commerce Ministry to scramble for 20 billion baht damage pay over G-to-G rice scam
BANGKOK, 6 May 2016 (NNT) – The Ministry of Finance has called on the Ministry of
Commerce to have six politicians and government officials pay an estimated 20 billion baht indamage compensation concerning a government-to-government rice scam.The Ministry of Commerce is currently examining legal details of the issue and will notify those who might be legally obliged to pay for such damage to the government, said government spokesman Sansern Kaewkamnerd.He said the government did not delay the case involving a previous government‘s rice subsidy program but was working on it.
http://news.thaivisa.com/thailand/thai-commerce-ministry-to-scramble-for-20-billion-baht-damage-pay- over-g-to-g-rice-scam/140952/
Trade deficit contracts by 9.1% in January 2016 as exports and imports fall
Published inDevelopment - Provincial
Sri Lanka's trade deficit contracted by 9.1 percent to US$ 695 million in January 2016 from US$ 765 million a year earlier, according to the Central Bank data released in its External Sector Performance Review Friday (May 06).Earnings from exports continued to decline for the eleventh consecutive month in January 2016 recording a 2.5 percent decline, year-on-year, to US$ 894 million largely reflecting continuous decline recorded in commodity prices in the international market.
Decline in export earnings of petroleum products, gems, diamonds and jewelry, tea, and spices mainly contributed for the drop.Expenditure on imports meanwhile, contracted by 5.5 percent, year-on-year, to US$ 1.589 billion in January 2016. Significant decline recoded in expenditure on fuel imports followed by rice imports and vehicle imports.Tourist arrivals continued to expand, recording a growth of 19.4 percent in February 2016. Earnings from tourism for the month of January increased 24.3 percent to US$ 322 million from US$ 259 a year ago.
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Workers' remittances grew by 7.6 percent to US 563.4 million in January 2016 compared to US 523.5 million in January 2015.The government securities market continued to experience a net outflow in terms of foreign investments with a cumulative outflow of US$ 253.6 million during the first two months of 2016 compared to an outflow of US$ 12.8 million in the corresponding period of 2015.In January 2016, the BOP is estimated to have recorded a deficit of US$ 619.3 million, compared to the deficit of US$ 696.5 million in the corresponding period of 2015.Sri Lanka's gross official reserves as at end January 2016 amounted to US$ 6.3 billion, equivalent to 4.0 months of imports while total foreign assets amounted to US$ 8.4 billion, equivalent to 5.4 months of imports.During 2016 up to 05 May, the rupee depreciated by 1.1 percent against the US dollar http://www.news.lk/news/business/item/13244-trade-deficit-contracts-by-9-1-in-january-2016-as-exports- and-imports-fall
Sri Lanka exports fall for 11th straight month May 06, 2016 20:21 PM GMT+0530
ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka‘s trade deficit contracted in January 2016 by 9.1 percent from a year ago to 695 million US dollars with export earnings falling for the eleventh straight month while imports fell faster than exports.The trade deficit narrowed on account of the higher decline in import expenditure mainly due to the drop in fuel, vehicle and rice imports, compared to the decline in earnings from exports during January 2016, the central bank said.Export earnings fell 2.5 per cent in January to 894 million US dollars from the year before largely reflecting continuous declines recorded in commodity prices in the international market, it said in a statement.
Continuing the declining trend in the last six months, expenditure on imports contracted by 5.5 per cent, year-on-year, to 1,589 million US dollars in January 2016. The continuous weakening of demand for Ceylon tea from the major buyers, mainly Russia, Turkey and some Middle- Eastern countries, caused export earnings from tea to decline by 12.4 per cent in January 2016, year-on-year.Both the export volume and the average price of tea were lower than previous year, the central bank said. But export earnings from textiles and garments, which contributed nearly 52 per cent to the total exports, improved by 13.3 per cent year-on-year in January 2016, reversing the declining trend prevailed in last quarter of 2015. Garment exports to both traditional and non-traditional markets improved during the month.
In line with the growth in export earnings from textiles and garments, import expenditure on
textile and textile articles increased by 25.4 per cent, in January 2016 owing to the 34.0 per centincrease recorded in fabrics imports. Imports fell in January 2016 mainly because of the significant decline in expenditure on fuel imports followed by rice imports and vehicle imports for personal use and investment purposes. Import expenditure on fuel declined significantly by 39.6 per cent, year-on-year, to 175 million US dollars, due to the drop in average import prices of all categories of fuel together with lower import volume of refined petroleum and coal.
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Reflecting the impact of increase in taxes for motor vehicles by the budget for 2016 expenditure on importation of vehicles for personal use and investment purposes which is categorised under consumer goods and investment goods declined significantly by 12.6 per cent and 42.3 per cent, respectively, in January 2016. Due to this tax increase, importation of personal motor vehicles, such as motor cars and motor cycles and road vehicles such as lorries, trishaws and buses which import specially for investment purposes declined during the month. (Colombo/May 06 2016)
http://www.economynext.com/Sri_Lanka_exports_fall_for_11th_straight_month-3-4917.html
High Low
Jan '17 1181.0 +4.0
Mar '17 1198.0 +4.0
May '17 1217.0 +4.0
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Rice Comment Rice futures ended the day on an up-turn. Weekly exports were disappointing at 45,500 metric tons. July completed a 38% retracement this week, with the next upside objective at the 50% level of $11.93. The market will be watching crop progress closely. If farmers plant what they
reported to USDA in the survey, the large crop will limit the upside potential. Currently, USDA says 72% of the crop in the ground and 55% emerged. In Arkansas, the totals are 87% planted and 66% emerged, so Arkansas farmers made lots of progress in a week ’s time. However, world production is in question as dry conditions persist in Asia due to El Nino, and that is providing support and possibly pricing opportunities for the time being.
USA Rice's Mosely Named USACC Legislative Committee Chair
By Peter Bachmann May 6, 2016
Mosely (left) takes the lead
WASHINGTON, DC -- This week, the U.S. Agriculture Coalition for Cuba (USACC) selected USA Rice Vice President of Government Affairs Ben Mosely as a co-chair of its Legislative Committee. The Legislative Committee works to manage the Coalition's collective federal lobbying efforts to remove financing and trade barriers currently in place with Cuba.USA Rice is one of USACC's founding
members and makes up one of more than 100 organizations that share a similar goal of normalizing agriculture trade with Cuba.
Devry Boughner Vorwerk, chair of the USACC, said, "Ben has been a strong contributor to our legislative efforts and is a strategic and innovative thinker on Hill strategy. We are pleased that he is
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willing to step up and lead."
In reference to his new role, Mosely said, "USA Rice has been working to end this embargo for decades
so it makes sense for us to hold a leadership role in the Coalition and help provide direction for ourmomentum."Mosely concluded, "We plan to ramp up our advocacy efforts on the Hill before Congress heads out of town for summer recess and look forward to building on our existing successes over the last 18 months."To learn more about the USACC and the issues they have focused on, visit their website.
Riceland's Trevor Freemyer
By Peter Bachmann
MEMPHIS, TN -- This week, more than 30 people associated with the implementation process of the National Rice Regional Conservation Partnership Program (RCPP) project and working under the umbrella of the Rice Stewardship Partnership convened here at the Ducks Unlimited
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(DU) headquarters.
Staff representing USA Rice, DU, and USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) spent a day and a half engaging in more than 20 presentations encompassing NRCS training, technical conservation education, and increasing the Stewardship Partnership program coordination. Several of the Partnership's key partners were also in attendance to provide insight on how the National Rice RCPP project is working and how to best synchronize efforts to increase the implementation of conservation across the rice landscape.
One of the partners in attendance was USA Rice member, Trevor Freemyer, sustainability coordinator for Riceland Foods. Freemyer addressed the group saying, "Riceland Foods is glad to be a part of this successful Rice Stewardship Partnership effort and it's been exciting to listen to what all of the staff in the field, working with rice farmers across the Mid-South and California have to say."
He added, "It's also been enlightening to hear from the NRCS staff here about the technical side of implementing all of these rice-friendly conservation practices. It's much more complex than I anticipated and definitely gives you a greater appreciation for the work their staff does behind the scenes on a daily basis."
USA Rice is continuing to work with DU, NRCS, and other partners to develop sustainable conservation programs designed to address the unique needs of rice farmers and increase the financial assistance provided for implementation of those practices
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By Peter Bachmann
Riceland's Trevor Freemyer
MEMPHIS, TN -- This week, more than 30 people associated with the implementation process of the National Rice Regional Conservation Partnership Program (RCPP) project and working under the umbrella of the Rice Stewardship Partnership convened here at the Ducks Unlimited
(DU) headquarters. Staff representing USA Rice, DU, and USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) spent a day and a half engaging in more than 20 presentations encompassing NRCS training, technical conservation education, and increasing the Stewardship Partnership program coordination. Several of the Partnership's key partners were also in attendance to provide insight on how the National Rice RCPP project is working and how to best synchronize efforts to increase the implementation of conservation across the rice landscape.
One of the partners in attendance was USA Rice member, Trevor Freemyer, sustainability coordinator for Riceland Foods. Freemyer addressed the group saying, "Riceland Foods is glad to be a part of this successful Rice Stewardship Partnership effort and it's been exciting to listen to what all of the staff in the field, working with rice farmers across the Mid-South and California have to say."
He added, "It's also been enlightening to hear from the NRCS staff here about the technical side of implementing all of these rice-friendly conservation practices. It's much more complex than I anticipated and definitely gives you a greater appreciation for the work their staff does behind the scenes on a daily basis."
USA Rice is continuing to work with DU, NRCS, and other partners to develop sustainable
conservation programs designed to address the unique needs of rice farmers and increase the financial assistance provided for implementation of those practices
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Amira Nature Fds (NYSE :ANFI )
Back on February 25, 2016, this humble writer had written a piece highlighting the potential investment pros and cons of Amira Nature Foods. In that article, I took an overview of the company and came to the conclusion that while it looked like a relative bargain based on its trailing twelve months earnings, before committing capital to this investment, one should conduct their own thorough due diligence before making any investment as some red flags existed that needed to be answered before making a commitment to ownership of this company.
When that article got released back in February, it got thrashed by what I would dub the fan boys of Amira Nature Foods stock on various stock message boards and forums. That in it of itself should raise eyebrows of any prospective investor looking to commit their hard earned capital to this particular stock: when people lash out at you for asking legitimate questions about a business, that should make you wonder how much rationality is surrounding the stock of that business. On February 25, 2016, Amira‘s stock traded at $12.50. Fast forward a little over 2 months and the stock trades today at just under $7.00. If you had decided to commit your hard earned money to Amira‘s stock back when this article was released, you would be staring at a 44% decline in your investment. This is not to gloat about being right or wrong. I didn‘t provide any predictions and projections of where I thought the stock was going back in February and Iwon‘t be predicting anything today. What I did advise was that a potential investor should tread carefully as there were – and still are – a plethora of issues surrounding the business that is Amira Nature Foods that need to
be answered to one‘s satisfacti on in a thorough and rigorous fashion. It is easy to get caught up in the excitement and potential of a seemingly promising sounding growth stock opportunity at low valuations. It gets even more dangerous when you actively start seeking out confirmation bias online in various stock forums and messaging boards on a particular stock you find so exciting.
A true investor conducts thorough due diligence on the company they are looking to invest in. You absolutely need to know accounting and possess financial and mathematical literacy. If there are accounting red flags that pop up, you need to be able to understand if they are serious or not. You need to be able to gauge whether management has integrity and an eye towards shareholders. The right company should be able to withstand the skeptical scrutiny that you put it through.
With all of that said, the primary reason Amira‘s stock has fallen so badly has to do with the fall in the commodity price of basmati rice. Along with a decrease in international revenue, revenue has fallen by 17.3%. One of the factors a potential investor has to be aware of when analyzing a commodity-based company is the concept of peak earnings and value traps. While Amira‘s
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One day he fell down due to weakness, and a shepherd girl passing by saw it and offered him a bowl of simple rice pudding which Gautama gratefully accepted, ate and felt refreshed sat in meditation to be enlightened and found the middle path is real path to salvation with the rider of leading a life without desires.
This event of enlightenment happened during the full moon in Taurus. This timing is important as Gautama was born during the full moon in Taurus and attained Nirvana also during the full moon in Taurus.The best Vesak rice pudding is made with sushi rice, but in Indiabasmati rice can be a good substitute. Sprinkle some light dusting of cinnamon on the pudding to add some flavor to it.
However, I am having Buddha Pudding on Vesak night for the last few years, but have not able to get into deep meditation after having it. The spiritual awakening of knowledge and wisdom comes by striving for perception of the reality beyond ordinary vision of the people who indulge in the ritual of cooking rice pudding and enjoying it.Awakening signifies realization of true and inner reality of higher consciousness which is achieved after many years of struggle and tough practice of meditation.
http://www.merinews.com/article/celebrate-vesak-with-buddhas-rice- pudding/15915965.shtml#sthash.8ls4CwV4.dpuf
International Benchmark Price
Price on: 05-05-2016
Honey
Garlic
1 Chinese first grade granules, CFR NW Europe (USD/t) 3500
2 Chinese Grade A dehydrated flakes, CFR NW Europe (USD/t) 4500
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Ginger
Source:agra-net For more info
Domestic Prices Unit Price : Rs per Qty
Product Market Center Variety Min Price Max Price
Rice
3 Samsi (West Bengal) Fine 2990 3020
Wheat
2 Neemuch (Madhya Pradesh) Other 1540 1951
3 Kalol (Gujarat) Other 1585 1875
Orange
2 Sitapur (Uttar Pradesh) Other 2800 3300
3 Chittorgarh (Rajasthan) Other 3000 3500
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Carrot
Source:agmarknet.nic.in For more info
Price on 05-05-2016
Price on 05-05-2016
Potatoes Package: 50 lb cartons
1 Atlanta Colorado Russet 16.50 17.50
2 Chicago California Russet 21 21
2 Detroit Idaho Russet 12 13.50
Cabbage Package: 50 lb sacks
1 Atlanta Florida Round Green Type 11.50 12.50
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3 Detroit Canada Round Green
Type 14 14.50
1 Atlanta Florida Red 26 26
2 Chicago Florida Red 21.50 21.50
3 Miami Florida Red 12 15
Source:USDA
Video claiming agreement at WTO to stop rice distribution via PDS is wrong: Govt
Khabar India Exclusive May 6, 2016
Government has come down heavily over a factually wrong video put on social media that shows that government has signed an agreement at WTO Ministrial conference that will stopdistribution of rice and other provision via PDS. Department of Commerce, Government of India has come across a video in Tamil, posted on the social networking site Facebook, where Thirumurugan Gandhi has made factually incorrect statements regarding signing of an Agreement to stop distribution of rice and other provisions through Public Distribution System(PDS), discontinuation of agricultural subsidies and allowing import of food items.This is completely wrong. No such Agreement was signed. There were no proposals for closure of ration shops, for discontinuing subsidies to farmers or for allowing imports of food items.The Statement about the Government stopping procurement of rice/food products and subsidies to farmers is also completely wrong, says the Government press release.
Thirumurugan Gandhi‘s claim that the agreement has been kept secret is not only baseless, it alsoreflects upon the knowledge of the speaker about the procedures of the World Trade Organization. The Tenth Ministerial Conference of the WTO resulted in Decisions in the area of agriculture, development and some issues relating to the Least Developed Countries. All these are public documents and are available at the official website of the WTO.The WTO rules do not bar public procurement for food security purposes. As far as the limit of support is concerned, India has been working to have the WTO rules in this regard updated. This is to ensure that we are not constrained by the WTO rules in making public procurement in future also.The
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Ministerial Decision on the issue of Public Stockholding for Food Security Purposes was achieved mainly due to the efforts made by India.This Government has ensured that no country will ever be able to challenge our procurement/public food distribution programmes for violation of the relevant WTO rules. At the Nairobi Conference, this Government has further ensured that the WTO will have to continue to work on this issue, even if there is no progress on other issues under negotiation.
The Ministerial Decision on the issue of public stockholding for food security purposes adopted in the Nairobi Ministerial Conference reaffirms earlier decisions on the issue adopted at the Bali Ministerial Conference and subsequently by the General Council on 27 November 2014 which when read together, mandate a permanent solution by the 11th Ministerial Conference of the WTO. Even without the permanent solution, India can continue with its public procurement programmes. The Government of India is conducting Minimum Support Price Scheme for distribution of Rice and other food items through the Public Distribution System through FCI and the agencies of
States. This system will in no way be impacted by any of the Decisions taken at the WTOMinisterial Conference. Similarly, there will be no impact of the Decisions on the procurement from the farmers at the MSP, which the Government of India will continue to announce as before. The decision does not, in any way, affect the ability of FCI to procure and store foodstuffs in its godowns.
The statement about stoppage of subsidies to farmers lacks any substance. No agreement was signed that would require the Indian Government to stop giving electricity subsidy,
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fertiliser subsidy etc. Protecting India’s agricultural sector is a priority with the Government in trade negotiations.
At the Nairobi Ministerial Conference of the WTO, India also sought and obtained another Ministerial decision on a Special Safeguard Mechanism (SSM) for agricultural products for developing country Members. The SSM is intended to help developing countries protect their agriculture sector from the effects of, inter alia, a surge in imports of agricultural products. India negotiated a Ministerial Decision which recognizes that developing countries will have the right to have recourse to an SSM as envisaged in the mandate of the Doha Round of trade negotiations. Negotiations for an SSM are to be held in dedicated sessions and the WTO General Council has been mandated to regularly review progress of these negotiations.
Agriculture is a priority with the Government of India and it is also taking a number of steps to ensure the welfare of the farmers. The Government is fully committed to ensure that the subsidies reach the intended beneficiaries in the most efficient manners. Government is also ensuring that the vagaries of nature and other calamities do not affect our farmers through recently introduced Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojna. There are many other positive steps taken by the Government to protect the interests and for the welfare of our farmers.
http://www.khabarindia.in/video-claiming-agreement-at-wto-to-stop-rice-distribution-via-pds-is-wrong- govt/
Disaster-affected rice farmers in Central Luzon reap first harvest for 2016
May 05, 2016
CITY OF SAN FERNANDO, Pampanga, May 5 (PIA) -- Rice farmers in Central Luzon are seeing a glimmer of hope after successive natural disasters swept their crop fields in 2015. About 18, 900 of them who were able to re-plant their damaged farms with support from the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) in partnership with the Department of Agriculture (DA) are now reaping their first harvest for 2016.Typhoon Koppu (Lando) made landfall in Aurora Province in October last year and was followed by Typhoon Melor (Nona) two months later.
In both instances, the region was among the hardest hit in terms of damage to agriculture, with
total production losses estimated at over USD 175 million.Many of the farmers who lost theirnewly harvested and ready-to-harvest rice to the two typhoons already suffered from the impacts of dry spells and drought earlier in 2015.
This first harvest represents the recovery of thousands of households spread across 36 municipalities in the provinces of Nueva Ecija, Pampanga, Tarlac and Aurora, said FAO Representative in the Philippines José Luis Fernández who joined beneficiary farmers in Candaba, Pampanga for a ceremonial harvest.
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With the assistance they received, we hope that the incomes they lost as well as the crisis they endured would not continue to destabilize their livelihoods and undermine food and nutrition security for much longer, he added. At the request of DA, FAO mobilized its Typhoon Koppu Response in December 2015.Bags of certified rice seeds and complete fertilizer were delivered to affected rice-farming households to complement the farm inputs that the Government provided.
The timely assistance enabled them to catch the imminent planting season, which ended in January. Missing that window could have resulted in six more months without adequate income or falling into greater debt – a serious issue that farmers face especially in times of crisis.As small farmers, what we received is a big thing for us even if it was just one bag of certified rice seeds and fertilizer for each of us. It is a big help to not have to buy those seeds and fertilizer so that we can start over, said farmer Eugenia Liwag of Candaba, Pampanga.
The income we will earn from this will be used to pay our debt from the last cropping that was damaged by the typhoons. Some of the rice we harvested will be for our family‘s consumption. We will also save some of the seeds for the next planting season, she added. Farmer beneficiaries are expected to produce a total of 99 200 metric tonnes of palay (paddy rice), which could generate 59 500 metric tonnes of milled rice that can feed about 522 000 people for one year.
Farmer Ignacio Sagum explained that before typhoons Koppu and Melor, he harvested an average of 80 bags of palay per hectare.Now we were able to harvest about 100 bags also
because of what we have learned through FAO, he said. With significant savings from the Typhoon Koppu response, FAO is also distributing assorted vegetable seeds such as bitter gourd, ampalaya, string beans, squash, eggplant, okra and tomato to 7 400 farming households and urea fertilizer to 13,490 households affected by Typhoon Melor.
FAO‘s Typhoon Koppu and Typhoon Melor response is supported by the United Nations Central Emergency Response Fund, the Government of Belgium, through FAO‘s Special Fund for Emergency and Rehabilitation Activities, and through re-programmed savings from the contributions of Ireland, New Zealand and Norway to FAO‘s earlier Typhoon Haiyan Emergency, Recovery and Rehabilitation Programme.
We remain committed to supporting the Government in helping the most vulnerable agricultural communities affected by disasters to rise from hardship and come out even stronger, Fernández added. (FAO
http://news.pia.gov.ph/article/view/561462436695/disaster-affected-rice-farmers-in-central-luzon-reap- first-harvest-for-2016-
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Nigeria: Firm Secures 5000 Hectares of Land for Rice Production in Adamawa
By Abbas Jimoh
A wholly indigenous agribusiness firm, Haske and Williams, has acquired 5,000 hectares of land in Demsa, Adamawa State to commence development of an integrated rice production project.Speaking to newsmen in Abuja on the signing of the development lease agreement for the paddy cultivation component of the project, the President and Founder of the firm, Mr. Abdullahi Bashir Haske, said the agreement was between the Batta Traditional Council of Demsa and Manomi support services limited, a subsidiary of Haske and Williams limited.
He described the execution of the development lease agreement as a critical milestone for the development of the company's 5,000 Hectare Irrigated and Mechanized Paddy Cultivation
Estate, stressing that it is the first of its kind private sector led initiative in north eastern Nigeriahttp://allafrica.com/stories/201605050936.html
Rains Batter Rice Other Crops; But Cotton May Be Bright Spot LSU AgCenter , All, All
Recent rains have drenched Louisiana, and LSU AgCenter experts and farmers say the outlook is not
good for the state’s rice crop.
Corn and wheat also have taken a beating – but specialists believe the Louisiana cotton crop may have weathered the storm.
Double-digit rainfall was recorded in many areas of the state over the past couple of weeks, and totals exceeding 20 inches were seen in some places. Observers even reported as much as 24-27 inches in spots, according to LSU AgCenter faculty members.
In the case of rice, Dr. Johnny Saichuk, an LSU AgCenter rice specialist, said many Louisiana farmers‘ crops were not affected by the high water, but for others the damage is done – both immediate and long-term.
"It‘s not a pretty picture right now," Saichuk said, adding some rice -producing areas he was informed about recorded rainfall exceeding 20 inches in 10 days.
Rice farmers as far north as Avoyelles and Rapides parishes are among the worst hit because of backwater flooding that has kept their fields submerged for several days, Saichuk said. Acreage in the southwestern part of the state appeared to drain better, he said.
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Heavy rains also have caused other problems for producers, Saichuk said. For example, aviation companies haven‘t been able to get in the air to spray for rice water weevils and weeds. And fertilizer applications by airplane also have been delayed because of bad weather, he said.
"This is going to hurt us," Saichuk said.
Moist conditions often are the prelude for plant diseases, according to the LSU AgCenter expert, who said he‘s already hearing reports of sheath blight in rice in Vermilion Parish.
In addition to those complications, rice fields that are being drained to help them recover from the flooding may then have to be partially flooded again by the farmers. That means pumping water back onto the fields, Saichuk said, point out that will cost farmers money.
Much of the rice is stunted, Saichuk said, because it was covered with too much water. He‘s recommending against completely draining rice fields because the young plants lack freestanding capability, and water can help support the spindly stems.
The LSU AgCenter expert said some rice farmers will decide to replant, but yields from late planting can be reduced by as much as 50 percent.
Even more, farmers who planted fields with Clearfield rice varieties may have trouble finding replacement herbicide-resistant seed, he said. And if an application of Newpath herbicide – which is used with Clearfield to control the nuisance red rice – already been made, it could damage conventional rice.
According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, 95 percent of the state‘s rice acreage was planted as of May 16. Of that total, 7 percent of the acreage was classified as poor, up from 3 percent in the previous week, according to the USDA, and the acreage considered excellent dropped from 12 percent to 9 percent.
Like Saichuk, LSU AgCenter assistant professor Dr. David Lanclos, who works with research and educational programs on soybeans, corn, and grain sorghum in the state, said submerged crops and missed pesticide and fertilizer applications were among the most obvious problems.
Lanclos said that while all plant commodities are suffering from the heavy rainfall in Central and South Louisiana, soybeans seem to be suffering the most.
"Approximately 60 percent of the soybeans have been planted in the state," he said, "And large acreages of soybeans are planted in Central and South Louisiana on soils less tolerant to high rainfall."
Traditionally, the heavy clay soils found in those areas require more time to drain and dry following a major rain, Lanclos explained.
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Lanclos said corn and wheat crops also were damaged by the wet conditions in Central Louisiana.
Specialists said the wheat harvest, which was looking promising, was stopped by the rain. Now, the rainfall, moving water and wind caused wheat to lodge in some areas of the field, which will make it difficult to harvest, and the quality of the grain is likely to be reduced – thus making the season less successful than had been expected just a couple of weeks ago.
LSU AgCenter experts say corn damage is expected to be less serious in the state, because a large portion of the state‘s acreage is plante d north of the heavily flooded areas. But experts still say some corn in the flooded areas may suffer because of the loss of nitrogen from the soil brought on by the flooding.
"There is going to be a lot of replanting – especially in the low areas of the field," Lanclos said.
In one bright spot, although the recent rains hampered many of the state‘s crops, the state‘s cotton crop has faired the weather well, according to LSU AgCenter cotton specialist Dr. Sandy Stewart.
Stewart, who works out of the LSU AgCenter‘s Dean Lee Research Station near Alexandria, said he still holds an optimistic outlook for this year‘s cotton crop.
"Statewide, the crop looks better than I thought it would," Stewart said. "There will have to be some replanting – but not as much as we originally thought it would be."
The youngest cotton in the state was planted just before the rains came, but there also are some cotton fields with plants that are at the four-leaf to-five-leaf stages, Stewart said.
"These larger plants likely will resume normal growth once the fields drain and the sunshine returns," he said, adding, however, "Some of the fields where the cotton was just planted and the plants had not emerged will most probably have to be replanted."
Cotton generally can tolerate 24-36 hours of submerged, waterlogged conditions, Stewart said. But decay can occur if cotton is submerged in standing water for longer periods.
"The bottom line is that older and larger cotton plants are more likely to tolerate this problem and recover normally," Stewart said. "There is little a producer can do to improve crop health until some drying occurs. Once that happens, we‘ll know more about where the crop is in terms of growth and development."
Cotton planting season in Louisiana is from mid-April to mid-May. As of May 13, about 90 percent of the state‘s cotton crop had been planted, Stewart said.
"We have a drying forecast right now," he said. "If this forecast stays, the fields will dry and producers will be able to get back in them to work."
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Those seem to be the issues for farmers, according to the experts, who explain farmers probably need anywhere from a week to 10 days of good weather before they can resume planting or replanting their fields.
Parishes receiving the heaviest rain include Acadia, Allen, Avoyelles, Beauregard, Calcasieu, Cameron, Evangeline, Iberville, Jeff Davis, Lafayette, Natchitoches, Point Coupee, Rapides, St. Landry and St. Martin.
Northern parishes also received rain but escaped the losses caused by heavy rainfall.
On the other hand, even moderate rainfall can make it more difficult to take heavy planting equipment into the fields to finish planting or to replant areas that need it, the experts say.
As an example of the types of problems farmers face, LSU AgCenter county agent Eddie Eskew said losses in Jefferson Davis Parish, where rainfall totals reportedly ranged from 11 inches to 22 inches, may not be huge – but that‘s still a problem.
"Believe it or not, our losses are not that severe – although any loss in agriculture is not good," Eskew said, explaining that farming profitably generally requires getting the maximum back from what you put into it.
http://www.lsuagcenter.com/topics/crops/corn/rains-batter-rice-other-crops-but-cotton-may-be- bright-spot
Stop burning ‘dayami,’ PhilRice tells farmers May 07, 2016 at 12:01 amby The Standard
SCIENCE CITY OF MUÑOZ, Nueva Ecija — The Philipine Rice Research Institute has
cautioned Filipino farmers to refrain from burningdayami (rice straw), saying this could
reduce nutrients in soil and make farmlands less productive.Evelyn Javier, supervising science
research specialist of the PhilRice‘s agronomy, soil and physiology division, said rice straw -
burning, which is practiced during the harvest season, causes air pollutants such as carbon
dioxide, carbon monoxide, nitrogen dioxide and sulphur dioxide.
When done frequently, she said this could reduce the soil‘s nitrogen content and phosphorus
content by 25 percent. It also cuts potassium content in soil by 20 percent and sulphur by 5
percent to 60 percent.Javier said this practice also damages food resources of beneficial insects
in the rice field.
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The institute said Republic Act 9003, also known as the Solid Waste Management Act (RA
9003) and the Philippine Clean Air Act of 1999 both prohibit open-field burning, including
burning of rice straws.According to PhilRice statistics, the country produces 15.2 million tons of
rice annually of which 11.3 millions are turned into rice straw.To minimize post-harvest waste,
rice straws can be used by farmers as organic fertilizer and primary material for mushroom
production. Also, rice straw and other biomass from farm by-products can help farmers save
expenses from chemical fertilizer inputs.
Javier said when rice straws are scattered in the field during land preparation, they maintain the
soil‘s nutrients such as nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium, sulphur, silicon and carbon as well as
moisture.They also preserve the biodiversity of microorganisms that helps in nutrient cycling and efficient fertilizer utilization.Rice straws can also be used as mulch to protect the roots of the
plants from heat and cold and reduce the evaporation rate and prevent weeds from growing in
the paddy.
Rizal G. Corales of PhilRice‘s Palayamanan Plus recommended the use of rice straws as
substrate for oyster mushroom (Pleurotus spp.) production.Corales said the bulk of the rice
biomass produced is still being disposed indiscriminately despite its many knownuses. Using
rice straw as mushroom substrate is economically profitable for farmers and people engaged in agribusiness, he said, adding waste from mushroom production is also the main substrate for
vermicomposting, one of the best organic fertilizers produced.
http://thestandard.com.ph/news/-provinces/205067/stop-burning-dayami-philrice-tells-farmers.html
PhilRice engineers, studies recognized
POSTED BY WEB TEAM POSTED ON MAY - 6 - 2016 The Philippine Society of Agricultural Engineers (PSAE) commended agricultural engineers and researchers of the Philippine Rice Research Institute (PhilRice) for their studies and outstanding contribution in agriculture during the 66th PSAE Annual Convention at Mariano Marcos State University, Batac City, Ilocos Norte, April 24-30. PhilRice Scientist, Dr. Ricardo F. Orge won the Most Outstanding Agricultural Engineer or Maramba Award, the highest recognition given during the event.
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Daily Global Rice E-Newsletter 2016
The same award was given to PhilRice Scientist, Dr. Manuel Jose C. Regalado in 2015. Orge is the former center director of the Institute‘s Climate Change Center and current program lead of Coping with Climate Change Program. Researchers Arnold S. Juliano, Romeo B. Gavino, Melissa E. Agulto, Victorino T. Taylan, Armando N. Espino Jr., and Emmanuel V. Sicat won first place in the agricultural power, energy, and waste utilization category for their study Improvement of PhilRice-designed rice hull gasifier engine-pump system for rainfed lowland irrigation. They developed a rice hull gasifier engine-pump system with a 30cm diameter reactor that uses an average of 8.5kg of fresh rice hull per hour to supply fuel to a 16hp gasoline engine. The same research team won second place for their study Optimizing water utilization from a
developed rice hull gasifier engine-pump system for rainfed lowland farm in the soil, and waterconservation category.
The team established an optimization scheme in using the developed gasifier system for three crops in a hectare farm. Results showed that using the gasifier system for continuous pumping operation can generate savings of P20, 705 per year with an investment payback period of 2.62 years and P1.23 per cubic meter pumping water cost. Posters derived from these studies won third place in their respective categories. Regalado, Alexis T. Belonio, Marvelin L. Rafael, Katherine C. Villota, Phoebe R. Castillo, and Eden C. Gagelonia‘s Design, testing, and evaluation of hydrous bioethanol distiller for the production of fuel-grade alcohol from nipa sap
(Nypafruiticans) won second place in the agricultural power, energy, and waste utilizationcategory. The distiller is consist of an internal-heated boiler/steamer, a packed-column, and a water-jacketed condenser. It is capable of distilling fuel-grade bioethanol at a rate of 2-4l/hr using fermented sap and 5l/hr for pre-processed feed. PSAE was founded in 1950 to advance the theory and practice of agricultural engineering. It is an accredited national organization and home to more than 7,000 licensed agricultural engineers in the country.
http://www.philrice.gov.ph/philrice-engineers-studies-recognized/#sthash.52aJdbld.dpuf