THE Southern Food Corporation, Cambodian Investment and Development, and the Green Trade Company announced Thursday that they planned to jointly invest $US30 million to buy cassava in Cambodia.
Thun Vireak, director general of Green Trade Company, one of the shareholders in the plan, told the Post on Thursday that the three companies would buy about 100,000 tonnes, more than 3 percent of the Cambodia’s annual cassava production, to export to Vietnam.
“We hope that under this cooperation, the three companies will be able to buy enough cassava as is planned,” Thun Vireak said.
According Thun Vireak’s report, the companies will start buying cassava in the up-coming December season in the Battambang and Kampong Cham provinces, the country’s two leading cassava producing areas.
Thun Vireak did not on mention on Thursday the price that the companies would set to buy the product from farmers.
The three companies have a history of working with one another. Representatives signed an agreement together on October 5, 2009, to buy rice and other products in Cambodia for export using total capital of $200 million.
Kit Seng, under secretary of state of the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries, said Thursday that he had not yet been informed about the cassava plan by the three companies.
But he said that he supported the scheme, because it helped increase markets for Cambodian farmers.
“We have plenty of cassava to support their plan because our farmers have grown a considerably large amount of cassava in Cambodia,” Kit Seng said.
According a report from the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries, in the farming year 2009 to 2010, Cambodia harvested a total amount of 3,497,306 tonnes of cassava.
Of this amount, 3,476,684 tonnes were harvested in the rainy season. The other 24,622 tonnes were harvested in the dry season.
Thun Vireak said that the companies planned to buy not only cassava but also other agricultural products such as paddy and rice.
“We will buy about 200,000 tonnes of [rice products] in Cambodia to export this year and over the next few years,” Kit Seng said.