Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Cambodian firm buys, dries maize for export

Cambodian firm buys, dries maize for export

Cambodian firm buys, dries maize for export

Phou Puy, of the Cambodian Rice Millers Association, says his company is buying 500 tonnes of corn a day for sale to Vietnam.

A LOCAL company owned by the head of the Cambodian Rice Millers Association said it is buying up to 500 tonnes of maize daily from farmers in western Cambodia to dry for export to the region.

Phou Puy, the president of the CRMA and head of Bai Tang (Kampuchea) Co Ltd, said Tuesday his purchases are helping domestic farmers that have suffered from a lack of markets for their excess maize.

"I am buying between 300 and 500 tonnes of corn daily from two provinces, Battambang and Banteay Meanchey," he said. "This is the first time I have bought corn to dry and export to Vietnam."

Phou Puy said the price of corn is down sharply this year. Corn kernels are selling for around 4 baht (US$0.12) per kilogram, and corn on the cob for 2.5 baht per kilogram.

"Price fluctuations are normal in a free market, so we can't set prices, as it depends on demand," he explained Tuesday. "But the current low prices are hurting farmers' incomes because they spent a lot on their crops, but can only sell them for a low price."

[The ministry] discussed with Vietnam to buy our corn, and we will take a delegation there shortly.

A lack of sufficient capital means he is unable to buy the entire excess crop.
"So I am buying from them, drying the corn, and selling it to other businessmen who export to Vietnam for up to 6 baht a kilogram," he said.

"Then I use that money to buy more."

Heng Chamnab, a corn farmer from Ou Thom village in Battambang province with 50 hectares of land, told the Post on Tuesday that he has struggled to find a market for his crop.

"The price is much lower than last season - at that point we were getting 5 baht for a kilogram of corn on the cob," he said.

Heng Chamnab blamed the slowdown in the global economy for the lower prices experienced in Cambodia.

He said revenues are only slightly above his expenses, but that his sole option is to sell 20-30 tonnes of corn to Thai brokers at a low price.

"We had to pay 100 baht per kilogram for poor-quality seeds, or 150 baht for high-quality seeds," he explained. "Then there were costs of hiring labour, transportation and other input costs - however, this selling price is too low."

Ministry seeks markets
Mao Thora, a secretary of state at the Ministry of Commerce, said the ministry has been working to find new markets for agricultural products, most of which are sold to the Kingdom's neighbours.

"[The ministry] discussed with Vietnam to buy our corn, and we will take a delegation there shortly to seek trade partners," he said.

"We also want to deal with other nations, but many of them require the crops to meet certain standards, which is why we are forced to rely on the neighbouring markets."


  • Hun Sen ready to ‘break record’, says Rainsy lost

    Caretaker prime minister Hun Sen used a meeting with 18,400 factory workers on Wednesday to predict that he would beat the record for being the world’s longest-serving non-royal leader. He also used the platform to slam political opponent Sam Rainsy who he said had lost

  • Sihanoukville land prices skyrocketing amid breakneck development

    Sihanoukville, the Kingdom’s most famous beach destination for tourists, is seemingly becoming a paradise for Chinese investors as well. The huge influx of Chinese investors has caused property values to rise, especially the price of land, which has nearly doubled in some places near

  • US names new ambassador to Cambodia

    US President Donald Trump on Friday appointed W Patrick Murphy as the new US Ambassador to Cambodia, replacing incumbent William A Heidt. A press release posted on the White House’s website said nominee W Patrick Murphy is currently acting principal deputy assistant secretary at

  • Kingdom is at a crossroads between East, West after poll

    It was dubbed a success by caretaker prime minister Hun Sen after the electoral victory of his Cambodian People’s Party (CPP), which is poised to take all seats in the National Assembly. But the July 29 national election has not been positively looked at by