Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Calls for sustainable rice in the face of global warming

Calls for sustainable rice in the face of global warming

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
The rice sector is facing increasing impact from climate change.CHRISTOPHE ARCHAMBAULT/AFP

Calls for sustainable rice in the face of global warming

The Sustainable Rice Platform (SRP) has called for private-public partnerships to secure a sustainable global rice supply while the sector is being increasingly impacted by climate change.

At the 8th Annual Plenary and General Assembly of the SRP held in Siem Reap this week, 150 delegates from its membership across 24 countries discussed emerging multi-stakeholder partnerships to transform the global rice sector.

The delegates called on governments, retailers and brands to work together with scientists, financial institutions and development partners to promote the most effective climate-smart practises among rice smallholders.

“Stakeholders can make a major contribution to the upscaling of climate-smart production practises,” the platform said, adding that a coordinated approach will ensure an enabling policy and market environment, entailing measures such as financial and market instruments, reduced tariffs and the creation of new market incentives.

“Urgent action is needed to improve the sustainability of the world’s rice supply, in the face of mounting impacts of climate change and water scarcity on the world’s 144 million rice smallholder farmers,” the SRP said.

The event, co-organised by SRP, the Wildlife Conservation Society (Cambodia) and the International Finance Corporation, was presided over by the Kingdom’s Minister of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries, Veng Sakhon.

The UN Food and Agriculture Organisation assistant director-general and Asia-Pacific regional representative Kundhavi Kadiresan said the standards seek to create a market for sustainable rice.

It will answer the need to generate profit for farmers and businesses and produce better-tasting rice for consumers while minimising the impact on the environment.

In her keynote speech at the SRP plenary meeting and general assembly, Kadiresan said: “SRP is serious about providing the means to produce rice that’s better – better for farmers, better for the environment and better for agribusiness.

“There’s so much more we need to do. If it was actually all very easy, it would have been all done by now,” she told an audience of some 150 researchers, agriculturists, government representatives and private sector partners.

In Cambodia last year, the International Finance Corporation (IFC), Mars Food and Battambang Rice Investment Co Ltd launched a partnership to promote the sustainable development of the Kingdom’s rice industry.

SRP said improving rice production and enhancing linkages with the global rice value chain will help Cambodia’s agri-sector expand market access, increase export value and improve farmers’ livelihoods.

“Over the next three years, about 9,000 smallholder farmers will benefit from exposure to sustainable farming practices, climate-smart agriculture technologies and financial literacy training,” it said.

First introduced in October 2015, SRP sought to mitigate the impact of rice farming to the environment. Per the UN’s estimates, rice production uses 40 per cent of the world’s irrigation water, and rice fields cause 10 per cent of global methane emissions.

MOST VIEWED

  • NagaWorld casinos set to reopen, schools to follow

    NAGACORP Ltd has requested that it be allowed to reopen its NagaWorld integrated resorts in Phnom Penh after the government recently approved casinos to operate again, provided they follow Covid-19 prevention measures set by the Ministry of Health. Mey Vann, the director-general of the Ministry

  • Cambodia armed with money laundering laws

    Money laundering will now carry a penalty of up to five years in prison while those convicted of financing terrorists will be jailed for up to 20 years, according to new laws promulgated by King Norodom Sihamoni and seen by The Post on Thursday. Comprising nine

  • Schools to be reopened in ‘three stages’

    With guidance from Prime Minister Hun Sen, the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sport, is in the process of reopening schools in three stages. But no timeline has been set, ministry spokesperson Ros Soveacha said on Thursday. Soveacha said the first stage will be to

  • Thai border crossings eased

    The Cambodian Embassy in Thailand said in an announcement on Wednesday that Thailand’s government has allowed certain passengers from several countries to enter its borders. The visitors must go back to their country immediately after their duties in Thailand are fulfilled, the embassy said.

  • Gov’t says tourism recovers slightly despite pandemic

    The Ministry of Tourism and the Phnom Penh municipal administration have recognised 33 tourism businesses in the capital which have consistently implemented safety measures for tourists and adhered to the code of conduct issued by the ministry. Recently, the ministry announced that tourism businesses had to

  • Mull ASEAN border opening, PM urges

    Prime Minister Hun Sen has requested that ASEAN launch a scenario for gradually reopening cross-border travel and trade between countries in the region. He said ASEAN has had more success combating Covid-19 compared to other regions. The prime minister’s request was made at the

  • Ministry reports 11 new Covid-19 cases, reiterates vigilance

    Minister of Health Mam Bun Heng has urged people to continue practising virus prevention techniques after 11 people tested positive for Covid-19 within two days after arriving in the Kingdom. Speaking on Sunday, Bun Heng stressed the importance of washing hands, wearing masks or scarves when

  • Koh Rong land ‘belongs to firm’

    Preah Sihanouk Provincial Administration spokesperson Kheang Phearum told The Post on Sunday that the 35ha being bulldozed by Royal Group Co Ltd in Koh Rong belongs to it after it was leased to it for 99 years by the government in 2008. Phearum said the land does

  • Nine on Indonesia flight Covid-19 positive

    The Ministry of Health on Saturday confirmed nine more imported cases of Covid-19. The nine ‒ eight Cambodians and one Indonesian, aged 22 to 26 ‒ arrived in Cambodia on Thursday via a direct flight from Indonesia and are receiving treatment at the Khmer-Soviet Friendship Hostipal in Phnom Penh.

  • Kingdom’s financial sector healthy

    Cambodia's financial sector remains on a sustainable growth path despite the Covid-19 pandemic squeezing crucial industries, National Bank of Cambodia (NBC) governor Chea Chanto said. Tourism, garments and footwear have borne the brunt of the Covid-19 impact, he said, whereas the financial and agriculture sectors