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May 2024

Physical stocks of local rice exceed a million tonnes, can meet demand — ministry

(The Edge filepix by Suhaimi Yusuf)

PUTRAJAYA (April 8): The country’s physical stocks of rice to date is 1,096,964 tonnes, including 290,000 tonnes of buffer stocks, signifying a stable quantity, able to cover the people’s needs for 5.48 months, said the Ministry of Agriculture and Food Security (KPKM).

In a statement on Monday, the ministry gave its assurance that the supply of rice as the country’s staple food in the market is sufficient to meet the needs of the people.

“Furthermore, the amount of the country’s physical stocks of rice compared to the total population is one of the highest and guaranteed in the region,” it said.

Currently, the distribution of local white rice (BPT) stocks is actively being carried out and the reduction in the price of imported white rice (BPI) of between RM2 to RM3 has also been implemented to meet the needs of consumers, as finalised by the National Action Council on Cost of Living (Naccol) last month.

The ministry said that the government has also implemented various initiatives to ensure an increase in local rice production, particularly through the 12 programmes within the “Rice Wave” initiative, and among those drafted are the expansion of the large-scale smart paddy (Smart SBB) Ala Sekinchan programme, a five-season paddy planting programme for two years, and initiatives to strengthen the paddy-field irrigation infrastructure.

“KPKM also encourages the cultivation and consumption of other nutritious and healthy crops by the people, apart from the national staple food, and this is the main emphasis of KPKM in implementing the national food security agenda, in line with the National Agro-Food Policy (DAN) 2021-2030,” the ministry said.

Minister of Agriculture and Food Security Datuk Seri Mohamad Sabu was reported to have said on Jan 16 that the “Rice Wave” initiative was launched this year to raise the country’s paddy and rice industry to a more efficient and resilient level.

He was reported to have said that the ministry had outlined 12 programmes to be implemented through the initiative, as a change trigger for the transformation of the country’s paddy and rice industry, among which is introducing a new policy for the Certified Paddy Seed Incentive. QR Code

Published Date: April 8, 2024

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